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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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"American tragedies occur where middle America frequents every day: airplanes, business offices, marathons. Where there persists a tangible fear that this could happen to any of us. And rightfully so. Deaths and mayhem anywhere are tragic. That should always be the case. The story here is where American tragedies don't occur. American tragedies don't occur on the southside of Chicago or the New Orleans 9th Ward."
This is a controversial Op-Ed article that discusses how place and the major axes of identity (race, class and gender) shape and intersect with the the national memory of violence and the media portrayal of violence. According the David Dennis, "The media seems to forget about New Orleans and any place that the middle class can't easily relate to."
Tags: race, class, gender, place.
"China's one-child only policy and historic preference for boys has led to a surplus of marriageable Chinese men. Young women are holding out for better apartments, cars and the like from potential spouses...30 to 48 percent of the real estate appreciation in 35 major Chinese cities is directly linked to a man's need to acquire wealth — in the form of property — to attract a wife."
Tags: gender, folk culture, China, podcast, culture, population.
Recently, Five women activists have been arrested for wearing prayer shawls at the Western Wall in Jerusalem. Israeli policewomen detained members of the religious group Women of the Wall for breaching orthodox rules governing prayers at the site, which only allow men to dress this way. This is Judaism's most holy site and orthodox traditions govern the legal code over who is permitted to be in this place and what they may do; this fight represents a struggle to redefine the meaning and usage of public space in Jerusalem (among other complex issues).
Tags: perspective, Israel, culture, gender. religion, culture, Middle East.
"The WomanStats Project is the most comprehensive compilation of information on the status of women in the world. The Project facilitates understanding the linkage between the situation of women and the security of nation-states. We comb the extant literature and conduct expert interviews to find qualitative and quantitative information on over 310 indicators of women's status in 174 countries. Our Database expands daily, and access to it is free of charge. Click here if you are a new to the project."
Amazing and thought-provoking.
Topic link: Population and Change: Gender
This map show Mother's Day celebration dates around the world.
While most of the world celebrates Mother's day in May, March 21st (the vernal equinox) is day most countries in the Middle East celebrate Mother's Day. So, why might the first day of spring be the day used to honor mothers? Hint: think about agricultural cycles and fertility symbols. Happy Mother's Day!
International Women's Day: political rights around the world mapped
This is late for International Women's Day, but it is never a wrong time to analyze the spatial and temporal patterns of the expansion of women's political rights. This interactive map is excellent for seeing these few metrics, but a more expanded dataset with maps concerning gender (in)equality in the world and the status of women is WomanStats.
Tags: gender, mapping, statistics, political.
The UN Millenium Goals include gender equity and gender empowerment. The goals are set to be achieved by 2015.
Gender imbalances in China have created a generation of men for whom finding love is no easy task
Cultural preferences for boys in China has led to a gender imbalance which has some unintended consequences, especially for the those seeking to have families with limited financial resources.
Tags: gender, China, population.
France declares war on the English language. Erin Burnett reports....
France is famous for trying to slow the linguistic diffusion of globalization's most powerful online language (which also happens to belong to their age-old cultural and political rival). France has a commission dedicated to removing new words that have English origins since 1996 with the goal of introducing words with have linguistic roots in French. Recently then have done away with the Twitter term #hashtag to #mot-dièses. This video criticizes this cultural practice and it is also derided in this NPR article. However this does not mean that France is immune to cultural pressure to change linguistic traditions. There was been a movement to alter the term Mademoiselle on official documents with a new title that allows women the freedom to choose the form of address that they prefer (and not to force them to reveal their marital status--think Ms. vs Miss).
Questions to Ponder: Why (and how) do languages change over time? Is it possible to keep a language 'pure?'
Tags: language, culture, globalization, unit 3 culture, France, gender.
The problems with the economy are not universally spread throughout society. Certain segments are impacted more than others by the current struggles, especially when with look at axes of identity, such as class, gender and ethnicity. While planning on a blue-collar job in the 1950s could have been a solid career plan for a young man in the United States, not so in the 21st century.
Tags: labor, gender, class, industry, education.
Seventeen years after she stared out from the cover of National Geographic, a former Afghan refugee comes face-to-face with the world once more.
The original cover is one of the more famous National Geographic photos of all time, and yet the woman in the photograph has not lived a life as though millions of people could recognize her eyes. This is her story.
While this article was very informative, I think it is the image that really speaks volumes, just as it did in 1985 when the picture was first taken. The women in the picture does not appear to be 28-30, rather she looks much older. Clearly she has led a tough life, and the evidence of that is written on her face a mere 15 years after the original was taken.
Tags: gender, development, worldwide, poverty.
Gender Development index - CHapter 9 materials
Here are some seemingly eclectic topics. All of them center around the appropriateness of the body being displayed publicly and the cultural norms that shape how we think about the issue. I've included a sensational restroom, public nursing, top-free protests, and of course, the Kate Middleton scandal.
Tags: culture, popular culture, gender, place, space.
Landesa partners with governments and local NGOs to ensure the world's poorest families have secure land rights, which develops sustainable economic growth and improves education, nutrition, and conservation...
Globally speaking, women are the primary agricultural workers yet rarely own land.
"Private girls' schools are now allowed to hold sports activities in accordance with the rules of Shariah, or Islamic law. Students must adhere to 'decent dress' codes and Saudi women teachers will be given priority in supervising the activities, according to the Education Ministry's requirements. The decision makes sports once again a stage for the push to improve women's rights, nearly a year after two Saudi female athletes made an unprecedented appearance at the Olympics." This news comes at a time when Saudi Arabia has allowed women to ride bikes (sort of).
Tags: Saudi Arabia, culture, gender, religion, Middle East.
Here are two shirts are from the Avengers. Both are designed for their children apparel production line, but I don't have to tell you which one is marketed for boys and which one is marketed for girls.
Questions to ponder: How (and why) do companies use cultural ideas and values to market their products? How do companies shape cultural ideas and values? What impact do messages like this have on a society's culture? Do seemingly subtle differences is pop cultural products like this matter?
Tags: perspective, culture, gender, popular culture.
Great for Society and Culture
The Chinese government says its so-called "one-child policy" has succeeded in reining in its population. But more than three decades after the policy's imple...
This short video is an excellent summary of some of the societal consequences of China's one-child policy in a culture that prefers male offspring.
Tags: gender, China, population.
The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
Need to watch this HUGGERS!
"women hold up half the skye" I like that haha. Anyways, the gender imbalance in china is rediculas. Hopefully be trying to forsce the women are equal thought this will in a generation or so fix itself. This way, there will also be less abortions per family.
"Every year, as a result of prenatal sex selection, 1.5 million girls around the world are missing at birth. How do we know these girls are missing if they were never born? Under normal circumstances, about 102 to 107 male babies are born for every 100 female babies born. This is called the sex ratio at birth, or SRB."
How do local cultures create these demographic statistics? How do these demographic statistics impact local cultures?
Tags: gender, technology, folk culture, statistics, China, population.
MOUNT GERIZIM, West Bank (AP) — The Samaritans, a rapidly dwindling sect dating to biblical times, have opened their insular community to brides imported from eastern Europe in a desperate quest to preserve their ancient culture.
Some folk cultures, such as the Samaritans, have historically intermarried and have been plagued by genetic diseases. Recently, they have turned to global solutions to their local demographic woes. "Five young women from Russia and Ukraine have moved to this hilltop village in recent years to marry local men, breathing new life into the community."
Tags: folk culture, gender, population, Russia, religion, culture, Middle East.
I imagine I could tell you what I think about this image, but my opinion is just one man's opinion. I'm sharing this to provoke you to have your own thoughts, feelings, perspectives and reactions to this political cartoon. In what way(s) is your perspective a product of your cultural, historical and geographic setting?
Tags: perspective, culture, gender.
When it came time for the Super Bowl, Clemmie Greenlee was expected to sleep with anywhere from 25 to 50 men a day.
There certainly is a dark side to large sporting events as this article on human trafficking makes perfectly clear. The 'event economy' based on tourism (even without trafficking) also has some negative impacts.
If you are up in space looking down on America west of the Mississippi, one of the brightest patches of light at night is on the Great Plains in North Dakota. It's not a city, not a town, not a military installation.
This patch of light is baffled me since clusters of light on this image almost always are connected to high levels of urbanization and North Dakota has no major population center of that magnitude. This is the Bakken formation, a new oil and gas field that is producing over 600,000 barrels a day. The lights are oil rigs that are lit up at night, but even more because many gas flares are burning leading locals to call the area "Kuwait on the Prairie." Oil men from far and wide are flocking to the rural, lightly populated area raising rents sky-high. This has caused a huge localized gender imbalance, changing the demographic and cultural character of the region because of the drastic the economic and environmental shifts in the area (see the national gender balance here). This is a great reminder that the physical and human geographies of a region are fully intermeshed one with another.
Tags: resources, gender, environment, economic, migration.
There will soon be 7 billion people on the planet. Find out why you shouldn’t panic—at least, not yet.
This whole year, National Geographic has been producing materials on the impacts of a growing global population (including this popular and powerful video). Now that the year has (almost) concluded, all of these resources are archived in here. These resources are designed to answers some of our Earth's most critical questions: Are there too many people on the planet? What influences women to have fewer children? How will we cope with our changing climate? Are we in 'the Age of Man?' Can we feed the 7 billion of us? Are cities the cure for our growing pains? What happens when our oceans become acidic? Is there enough for everyone?
Tags: population, National Geographic, sustainability, density.
In a country this battered, fractured, dysfunctional – how much can she really hope to achieve?
The issue of female education in Pakistan has exploded after Malala Yousafzai was attacked by the Taliban for publicly advocating for girls to receive more schooling. This attack has lead several media outlets to take a more serious look at the gendered cultural and economic opportunities (or lack thereof) for girls within Pakistan. This NPR podcast also speaks of the real options in front of so many girls like Malala and the cultural and political contexts within which they navigate their lives.
Tags: gender, South Asia, podcast, culture, Islam, development, unit 3 culture, education.
From technology to equality, five ways the world is getting better all the time...
This article by former President of the United States Bill Clinton, outlines numerous ways that globalization can improve the world, especially in developing regions. He uses examples from around the world and includes numerous geographic themes.
Tags: technology, medical, economic, gender, class, globalization, development, worldwide.
This is a most decidedly dated reference for pop culture, but a great movie for making explicit the idea that the way we speak is connected to where we've lived (also a good clip to show class differences as well as gender norms). The clip highlights many principles and patterns for understanding the geography of languages.
Tags: Language, class, gender, culture, historical, London, unit 3 culture and place.