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For years, researchers have puzzled over why Viking descendents abandoned Greenland in the late 15th century.
As the climate began to cool the diet of the Greenland settlers changed dramatically. Originally their diets consisted of about 20-30% seafood, but as farming became nearly impossible on this increasingly marginal land, it jumped up to about 80%. The economic livelihood of the settlements was in danger and the solution lay in a cultural transition, but one that they didn't want to make. "They saw themselves as farmers and ranchers rather than fishermen and hunters...[and were] worried about the increasing loss of their Scandinavian identity." In essence they abandoned Greenland in part because they chose not abandon their Viking heritage to embrace a culture that would have be more like that of the Inuits. Cultural factors may have mattered more than economic limitations.
Tags: Greenland, folk culture, historical.
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Investigate for yourself the mechanisms of global trade
This more clearly shows the regional restructuring of the global economy than just about anything I've ever seen, especially manufacturing. The 8 largest and busiest ports in the world are all in East or Southeast Asia (and 11 of the top 13). A quick glance at the historical charts will show that most of these were relatively minor ports that have exploded in the last 20 years.
Tags: transportation, globalization, diffusion, East Asia, industry, economic.
I tried to pinpoint intermodal connections at ports and noted the proximity of ports to other waterside uses like beaches and private craft marinas. Ports are facinating places. Think about how containerization has impacted the built landscapes shown in these maps.
Good way to teach geography.
I think this is perfect for my geographystudents this week. Worth to use in a study of global tradestructures.
Guinea pigs are popular pets in the U.S., but in parts of South America, they're a delicacy. Some environmental and humanitarian groups are making a real push to encourage guinea pig farming as an eco-friendly alternative to beef.
First off, my apologies if you find the image distressing (I have two guinea pigs in my house and I will not be showing this picture to my children). However, the fact that many readers might find this image disturbing but wouldn't think twice about the sight of chicken grilling on the barbeque highlights the cultural taboos surrounding what we consider appropriate food sources. The tradition has diffused to the United States as more South American immigrants have come to the United States. While the meat is more environmentally sustainable (less resources are required to raise one pound of guinea pig meat than one pound of beef), many potential costumers are leery to eat something that they consider a pet.
Tags: food, diffusion, sustainability.
"Ogooglebar. That's Swedish, and means "something you can't find with the use of a search engine." At least, that's what the Language Council of Sweden wanted Ogooglebar to mean--until Google stepped in, fearing that the word had negative connotations for the firm."
I am used to the French trying to slow the flow of English words into French, but shocked that Google would join in the fray to slow linguistic change. Words evolve based on cultural shifts and technological changes and the computer industry has especially created new words to describe emerging, new social interactions. I'm certain that the company Google is thrilled that "to google" is the verb of choice to describe the action of searching for online for content. I would have guessed that Google was savvy enough to understand that this "ungoogleable" term is not an indictment on the company, but a new way to define that elusive, mysterious, indefinable quality for a generation that sometimes acts as if everything can be found of Google.
Tags: language, culture, technology, google, diffusion.
The current rise or durability of the economies of the Global South do not signal that economic geography does not matter, but that current investment has simply shifted.
In an era where globalization has rendered distances a minor barrier to diffusion, some have erroneously concluded that geography is no longer relevant to economic development and urban planning. Nothing could be farther from the truth, but that doesn't mean that the 'old rules' of space and place aren't be re-written. This is a nice article that discusses the continued importance of spatial thinking and geography for urban planning.
Tags: urban, planning, economic, urbanism, globalization, unit 7 cities.
In 1900, two-thirds of the world’s Catholics lived in Europe. Today only 20 percent do.
As Europe has become an increasingly secularized set of societies, the demographic based of the Catholic Church has shifted south. However, the power structure has not migrated south as the European cardinals still are a majority (although 2/3 vote necessary to elect the next pope).
Tags: Christianity, culture, diffusion, religion.
TED Talks At TEDGlobal University, Shereen El Feki shows how some Arab cultures are borrowing trademarks of Western pop culture -- music videos, comics, even Barbie -- and adding a culturally appropriate twist.
This TED talk cleverly discusses the cultural processes of globalization by examining two examples from the Islamic world. The examples of the TV station 4Shbab and the comic book series The 99 show that all global cultural interactions don’t have to result in a homogenous “melting pot.” Local cultural forces can tap into the powers of globalized culture that can create dynamic local cultures that are both intensely local and global.
Questions to Ponder: What does the speaker mean when she by refers to cultural interactions as a mesh (as a opposed to a clash or mash) of civilizations? What other examples of cultural meshes can you see that show these processes?
Tags: TED, religion, culture, Islam, globalization, popular culture, unit 3 culture.
This speaker gives examples of gobalization in action, but explains how cultures adapt new concepts and ideas to fit in with their own ideals.
What type of diffusion is this? Also an example of ______________
The idea of flash mobs has spread quickly, diffusing at a time when online video sharing can immortalize the moment in time and social media can amplify the audience beyond just one place.
I LOVE this particular flashmob (as a bonus, 'read' the cultural landscape to try to identify where this took place). While there are many types of successful flash mobs, all share one characteristic: place matters. The place where a flash mob performs is not simply a stage; place is a crucial part of the meaning of the flash mob. An incredibly prominent place with open spaces and many sight lines is a prime location for a flash mob. Beyond these tangible characteristics, if a site has some importance cultural significance, those qualities can be meshed with the meanings of the flash mob. For more of my musings on flashmobs (and extra clips) you can continue reading here: http://geographyeducation.org/whats-new/articles/place-and-flash-mobs/
Tags: place, space, diffusion, popular culture.
Flash mob in the school by Drama Class?
View Full Lesson on TED-ED BETA: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-pandemics-spread In our increasingly globalized world, a single infected person can board a pl...
This is a great demonstration of why spatial thinking is critical to so many fields, including medicine.
Tags: diffusion, medical, historical, spatial.
The viral hit isn't a fluke. South Korea has been cultivating a global music business for decades.
You may already know that I've been fascinating watching the cultural diffusion of Gangnam Style throughout the world as mentioned previously. This NPR podcast looks at the economic infrastructure of the South Korean music industry that explains in greater detail how this video went viral. The distribution of this video is dependent in part on the technological sophistication and economic strategies of South Korea to associate their brands with cultural cachet.
Tags: popular culture, industry, diffusion, globalization, technology, economic, unit 6 industry.
The Gangnam Style! sensation is all over the internet, complete with parodies that both honor and mock the original. This first video is the original, which in a few short months received well ove...
The following link has the video, parodies and infographics to help student explore the meaning behind the cultural phenomenon.
Questions to Ponder: Considering the concept of cultural diffusion, what do we make of this phenomenon? What cultural combinations are seen in this? How has the technological innovations changed how cultures interact, spread and are replicated?
Tags: popular culture, video, diffusion, globalization, culture, place, technology, unit 3 culture.
Public health crises of the past decade — such as the 2003 SARS outbreak, which spread to 37 countries and caused about 1,000 deaths, and the 2009 H1N1 flu p...
The spread of infectious diseases is inherently connected to the mobility of infected. Airports are important nodes in this complex transportation network. Which airports would have the greatest potential to spread diseases? At MIT, they've gathered data that incorporates variations in travel patterns among individuals, the geographic locations of airports, the disparity in interactions among airports, and waiting times at individual airports to create a tool that could be used to predict where and how fast a disease might spread. To read more, see the associated article.
This resource is a comprehensive approach to teaching spatial thinking skills. Terms with spatial reference (i.e.-place, diffusion, migration, situation, scale, region, centrality, proximity, etc.) are defined within their spatial context and related to their multiple curricular connections such as Life Science, Physical Science, Earth Science and (of course) Geography. These terms and concepts then link you to teaching resources, online modules, lesson plans and classroom activities. While useful for all units, this is especially useful for the beginning of a course to teach the importance of spatial thinking skills to then have them permeate the rest of the year.
A page that plots the geographic distribution of the terms "pop" and "soda" when used to describe carbonated beverages...
This is an old classic that is going viral on Facebook right now, so I thought it would be time to link you to the original. This map isn't just cool, but a great portal to a discussion on regions, diffusion and cultural identity. This is a modern 'shibboleth' for the United States, a way to show where you are from to some extent. What are other 'shibboleths' that make your region distinct?
Ezekiel "Ziggy" Ansah's journey to the NFL, beginning as a walk-on to the Brigham Young University football team from Accra, Ghana, who had never played foot...
Ezekiel loved playing soccer and never played American football until he was in his 20's; that is NOT a typical path to the NFL. Ziggy's life represents the geography of opportunity. If he had grown up in the United States, a boy with his physical abilities would have been funneled into football leagues at an early age. If he lived his whole life in Africa, he would never become a millionaire (probably not anyway). However, global diffusion of religious ideas brought LDS missionaries to his home in Ghana; enhanced migrational opportunities took him to Utah and all of these geographic factors (combined with his personal skills and ambition) helped him to become the fifth overall selection in the 2013 NFL Draft and a member of the Detroit Lions. Read here for more on Ziggy.
This story also makes be wonder if those with the greatest physical talent for a sport always gets the opportunity. I'm sure some kids in tropical countries have the physical tools to be fantastic hockey players, but without access to participation at an early age because of the cultural preferences of the area (although with hockey you could argue it's also climatically determined), they are geographically constrained to a different set of possibilities for their lives.
It's #OpeningDay of the 2013 #Baseball season! Check out this great #geography lesson from the @baseballhall of Fame htl.li/iLlJU— NCGE (@NCGE1915) April 1, 2013
It's #OpeningDay of the 2013 #Baseball season! Check out this great #geography lesson from the @baseballhall of Fame htl.li/iLlJU
This resource has grade-level appropriate lessons on the spatial diffusion of of teams and the cultural geography of the baseball.
Tags: NCGE, sport, diffusion, K12.
The Pew U.S. Religious Landscape Study religion map diagrams which religions have the highest populations in each state.
The geography of religion, even in an era of secularization, is still a powerful indicator of many patterns of human geography. What is the religious profile of your state? What is the spatial distribution of the religious tradition with which you identify? What explains those spatial patterns?
Tags: USA, culture, diffusion, religion, Christianity.
Elevated levels of nitrogen dioxide pop out over certain shipping lanes in observations made by the Aura satellite between 2005-2012. The signal was the strongest over the northeastern Indian Ocean.
Tags: transportation, globalization, diffusion, remote sensing, industry, economic, unit 6 industry.
The Straits of Malacca show up as a highly affected band - and this from traffic that is not even bound for, or related to, Malaysia.
New demographic study in California reveals nation’s changing face. Plus how Pacific Islanders changed high school football in Utah and why a Somali Bantu band from Vermont is in demand around the country.
This news article of 'odds and ends' has some interesting geographic content. Having lived in Utah for many years, I can attest to the fact that the "Polynesian Pipeline" for Utah schools is incredibly important and represents a chain migration that has culturally shifted both the 'host' and 'migrant' population. The 'haka' is now institutionized as a part of Intermountain West football culture.
Also in this article:
--Hispanics to outnumber whites in California by 2014
--Somali Bantu band from Burlington, VT in demand across the country
Tags: migration, culture, diffusion, religion.
A handful of AIDS cases were first recognized in the U.S. at the beginning of the 1980s. By 1990, there was a pandemic. In 1997, more than 3 million people became newly infected with HIV.
The spread of AIDS/HIV since the 1980s has varied greatly over time and space. The red lines represent Sub-Saharan countries and the dark blue line on this interactive is the regional average of Sub-Saharan African countries. The regional trend was on the rise at the end of the 20th century, but is now on a slight decline (but still an major impact on the continent). Countries such as Botswana and Zimbabwe have made some significant strides in limiting the spread of AIDS (Zimbabwe is the country that 'peaked' in 1997 and has had the steepest decline).
Tags: Africa, medical, development, infographic, diffusion.
In this age of fast travel and instant digital communications, we tend to forget that not so long ago, distances were subjectively very different.
This series of maps shows the great leaps and bounds that were made during the 19th century in transportation technology in the United States. This impacted population settlement, economic interactions and functionally made the great distances seem smaller. This is what many call the time-space compression; the friction of distance is diminished as communication and transportation technologies improve.
Questions to Ponder: When someone says they live "10 minutes away," what does that say about how we think about distance, transportation infrastructure and time? How is geography still relevant in a world where distance appears to becoming less of a factor?
Tags: transportation, models, globalization, diffusion.
"This series of maps shows the great leaps and bounds that were made during the 19th century in transportation technology in the United States. This impacted population settlement, economic interactions and functionally made the great distances seem smaller. This is what many call the time-space compression; the friction of distance is diminished as communication and transportation technologies improve.
Questions to Ponder: When someone says they live "10 minutes away," what does that say about how we think about distance, transportation infrastructure and time? How is geography still relevant in a world where distance appears to becoming less of a factor? "
THERE WAS SOMETHING odd about the black car at the junction of Sutter and Hyde Streets. It was an ordinary saloon. Its windows were clear, and it looked in good...
Technologies today have allowed us to be digitally connected from anywhere. This impacts geographic patterns from outsourcing to local businesses that rely on interpersonal communications to connect potential demand with resources. Some may see this as geography becoming less of a barrier, and consequently, less relevant. This article in the Economist argues that as these technologies have rendered location more important than ever since they rely on geospatial technologies. "The reports of the death of distance have been much exaggerated."
Tags: technology, globalization, location, place.
The Kauffman Foundation's Samuel Arbesman on his new book, The Half-Life of Facts.
This is an interview, Samuel Arbesman,the author of The Half-Life of Facts explains how population density and place matter in forming a creative economic workforce. Urban centers act as drivers of innovation and advancements and attract the more ambitious and daring workers. Additionally, this map on the expansion of the printing press (discussed in the interview) is also a great map to show how technological innovations can spur cultural diffusion.
Tags: technology, diffusion, urban, labor, migration, book review.
Extreme poverty in the United States is giving rise to a group of infections known as the neglected tropical diseases, which we ordinarily think of as confined to developing countries.
Poor Americans are more likely to contract tropical diseases such as Chagas disease and dengue fever. Question to ponder: what geographic factors (physical and human) lead poor people in the United States to be more heavily impacted by the spread to these diseases?
A former gang member from Long Beach, California, teaches break dancing to at-risk youth in Cambodia.
This video is a great example of cross-cultural interactions in the era of globalization. Urban youth culture of the United States is spread to Cambodia through a former refugee (with a personally complex political geography). What geographic themes are evident in this video? How is geography being reshaped and by what forces?
A very positive video but I would like to know how KK was able to come clean of drugs (I assume he did them in California). I would also like to know what made him decided to change for the better.
Michael Slackman, The Times's Berlin Bureau Chief, looks into the city's obsession with a popular street dish that combines sausage, ketchup and curry powder.
The globalization of food, immigration and the diffusion of cultural practices are all richly displayed in this short clip.