Geography Education
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Geopolitics and the New World Order

Geopolitics and the New World Order | Geography Education |
Geography increasingly fuels endless chaos and old-school conflicts in the 21st Century.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I know that many academic geographers weren't pleased with the environmental determinism in Robert Kaplan's book The Revenge of Geography and the attention that in received in mainstream media outlets like the New York Times (mainly for it's reduction of geography to physical geography and it's acceptance of maps as pure truth).   In this article in TIME by Robert Kaplan, he highlights how geographic context is vital to understanding global politics...that is something we all can agree on even if we don't like the particulars of his analysis. 

Adilson Camacho's curator insight, March 30, 8:12 PM

Como Diz Milton Santos: "O retorno do território"! Que, aliás, nunca deixou de estar no centro dos acontecimentos ... 

 O insight de Seth Dixon:

Sei que muitos geógrafos acadêmicos não ficaram satisfeitos com o determinismo ambiental no livro de Robert Kaplan A Vingança de Geografia e a atenção que em recebido em meios de comunicação tradicionais, como o New York Times (principalmente por sua redução de geografia para geografia física e é a aceitação de mapas verdade tão pura). Neste artigo em TEMPO por Robert Kaplan , ele destaca como contexto geográfico é vital para compreender a política global ... que é algo que todos podemos concordar, mesmo que nós não gostamos de os elementos de sua análise. 

Geography Education
Global news with a spatial perspective:  Interesting, current supplemental materials for geography teachers and students.
Curated by Seth Dixon
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Welcome to 'Geography Education'

Welcome to 'Geography Education' | Geography Education |

Finding Materials: This site is designed for geography students and teachers to find interesting, current supplemental materials.  To search for place-specific posts, browse this interactive map.  To search for thematic posts organized by the APHG curriculum, see  Also you can search for a keyword by clicking on the filter tab (looks like a funnel)  above in the upper-righthand corner.

Seth Dixon's insight:

Staying Connected: You can receive post updates in the way that best fits how you use social media.

Update Notifications: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest.

Email: Click 'follow' button at top right of this page.

Sites with Content: Wordpress,

I hope that you enjoy the content and materials that you find on this website.  This represents the best news, materials and resources that I have found that can be used in geography (and other) classrooms.  Use the 'funnel' as a way to filter and search for resources of specific topics or places.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, September 10, 2:44 PM

This is the key to finding specific articles.

Helen Rowling's curator insight, September 28, 6:30 PM

Use updates to filter through and be collated in your most frequented tools.

Rich Schultz's curator insight, November 18, 2:10 PM

Geography and current events

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Geography of Thanksgiving

Geography of Thanksgiving | Geography Education |
Seth Dixon's insight:

I am very pleased to be blogging for National Geographic Education.  Here is the link to my first post on the geography of Thanksgiving. 

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Giving Thanks—or Miigwetch

Giving Thanks—or Miigwetch | Geography Education |
Gathered around the Thanksgiving table, Americans tell stories about colonists and Native Americans coming together. But do Native Americans even celebrate Thanksgiving? And what would Native American heritage food look like? This November, With Good Reason takes a look at the indigenous side of a Thanksgiving table.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This podcast is a great look at the diverse ways in which a national holiday can be celebrated.  The cultural connections in the podcast are quite rich.  

Tags: Thanksgiving, food, seasonal, folk culture, culture, indigenous.

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The changing shape of world demographics

Animating the changing shape of the world population pyramid. For more multimedia content from The Economist visit our website:

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is an incredibly powerful and remarkably well-done video TED-ED lesson on the importance and value of population pyramids.  This video goes nicely with this article from the World Bank entitled "The End of the Population Pyramid" which highlights the demographic changes that will be reshaping global demographics in the next 50-100 years.  

Tag: populationdeclining population, demographic transition model, video, APHG.

Sally Egan's curator insight, November 25, 10:05 PM

An outstanding videao explaining the population oyramid and how and why the world's population pyramid is changing fro the traditional pyramid to a block or column shaped graph.


L.Long's curator insight, November 25, 11:19 PM

Population challenges

José Antônio Carlos - O Professor Pepe's curator insight, November 26, 7:14 AM

Até a pirâmide demográfica está em crise!

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Africa, Uncolonized: A Detailed Look at an Alternate Continent

Africa, Uncolonized: A Detailed Look at an Alternate Continent | Geography Education |
What if the Black Plague had killed off almost all Europeans? Then the Reconquista never happens. Spain and Portugal don't kickstart Europe's colonization of other continents. And this is what Africa might have looked like.

Tags: Africa, colonialism, borders, historical, map.

Seth Dixon's insight:

On the flip side, here is a 19th century map highlighting how "colonizable" particular regions of Africa were considered back then by Europeans.  

Adilson Camacho's curator insight, November 23, 5:00 PM

adicionar a sua visão ...

Christian Allié's curator insight, November 24, 3:30 AM



....... Africa's problems were caused by the borders drawn by European colonists in ignorance of tribal lines.


[ ... ]


.......... slam of course did not originate in Africa, and some would claim that its dominance of large areas of Africa, at the expense of pre-existing belief systems, is as much an example of foreign cultural imperialism as the spread of Western religions and languages is in our day. But that is material for another thought experiment. This one aims to filter out the European influence.

Neither European nor Arab influence is in evidence in the southern part of Africa – although some toponyms relate directly to states in our timeline: BaTswana is Botswana, Wene wa Kongo refers to the two countries bearing that name. Umoja wa Falme za Katanga is echoed in the name of the DR Congo's giant inland province, Katanga. Rundi, Banyarwanda and Buganda, squeezed in between the Great Lakes, are alternative versions of 'our' Burundi, Rwanda and Uganda.

[ ... ]

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4 simple steps to ensure you'll never, ever be tricked by an internet hoax again

4 simple steps to ensure you'll never, ever be tricked by an internet hoax again | Geography Education |
You're too smart to share this nonsense
Seth Dixon's insight:

Many students today are digital natives and teachers often assume that students understand how to 1) find, 2) evaluate and 3) vett online resources in a critical manner.  To read more about assessing geographic-specific resources online, see this article here. 

Tags: social media.

magnus sandberg's curator insight, November 24, 9:07 AM

I would perhaps replace some of these four points with others. But that is not the most important, as any steps taken will raise awarness, and that is what we want.

rodrick rajive lal's curator insight, November 25, 3:52 AM

Well, I guess we have come across incidents of Phishing and Spam e-mails? Most of these are scams that are set to draw out some money from you. Some might ask for your bank account details. 

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India's Potty Problem

India's Potty Problem | Geography Education |

Which statement is true? 

A. 60% of all households without toilets in the world are in India.
B. India’s Muslims are less affected by the sanitation problem than Hindus.
C. India’s lack of toilets is worse than China’s.
D. Lack of toilets in India puts women at especially high risk.

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is the ultimate trick question because unfortunately, ALL of these statements are true.  India is a country of tremendous economic growth, but also filled with squalor; there are more cellphones than toilets in India.  The lack of adequate sanitation and toilets is serious enough that that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made building toilets a national priority.  Comics are using their platform to bring this issue of uneven development to light.    

Tagsdevelopment, poverty, India.

Linda Lee King's curator insight, November 23, 2:55 PM

Call Matt Damion! 

Matt Davidson's curator insight, November 25, 5:55 PM

a nice article for year 7 (water) and 10 (global wellbeing)

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23 maps and charts on language

23 maps and charts on language | Geography Education |

"Did you know that Swedish has more in common with Hindi than it does with Finnish? Explaining everything within the limits of the world is probably too ambitious a goal for a list like this. But here are 23 maps and charts that can hopefully illuminate small aspects of how we manage to communicate with one another."

Tags: language, culture, English, infographic.

Joy Kinley's curator insight, November 20, 8:54 AM

Interesting visual representation of language and their relationships.  Language defines us.  It doesn't just give us a way to communicate but it also limits how we define and describe our world.

Rich Schultz's curator insight, November 26, 1:40 PM

Mapping of languages...

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Visited States Map

Visited States Map | Geography Education |

"Create a Map of all the places you've been."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is an incredibly limited mapping platform, but if all you want to do is put states of the United States into two simple categories (such as 'states I have visited' and 'states I have not visited'), then this works. 

Tags mapping, 201, edtech, cartography, mappingUSA.

Joy Kinley's curator insight, November 18, 2:55 PM

This is a pretty cool visual representation of the different US states that you have visited.

Lauren Jacquez's curator insight, November 19, 9:45 PM

really cool site!

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40 Percent Of The World's Cropland Is In Or Near Cities

40 Percent Of The World's Cropland Is In Or Near Cities | Geography Education |
Just how much of the world's cropland can we really call urban? That's been a big mystery until now.

Now, a study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters has an answer: Somewhere around 1.1 billion acres is being cultivated for food in or within about 12 miles (20 kilometers) of cities. Most of that land is on the periphery of cities, but 16.6 percent of these urban farms are in open spaces within the municipal core.

Christopher L. Story's curator insight, November 18, 7:58 AM

As our course moves towards urbanization...interesting

Rich Schultz's curator insight, November 26, 1:43 PM

Is this a surprise?

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Kuwaiti cartoonist battles opponents on how to portray Islam to the world

Kuwaiti cartoonist battles opponents on how to portray Islam to the world | Geography Education |

"Naif al-Mutawa, creator of comic book series THE 99, spoke with Al-Monitor about the recent death threat by the Islamic State and how US President Barack Obama's enemies became his."

Seven years after the Kuwaiti psychologist and entrepreneur first launched his comic book series based on the 99 attributes of Allah, he's facing a sudden onslaught of death threats, fatwas and lawsuits (his comic books were highlighted in this TED talk on cultural change in the Islamic World). His US distributor, meanwhile, continues to sit on a TV deal, in part because of pressure from conservative bloggers who object to any positive description of Islam.

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Meandering Stream Time Lapse

The most viral images on the internet, curated in real time by a dedicated community through commenting, voting and sharing.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a fantastic way to visualize physical geographic processes. 

Tags physical, fluvial, geomorphology, erosion, landscape.

Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 25, 1:24 PM

El Sire Reserve in Peru is a river that has been monitored over the last 28 years. Every time I watch this short 6 second clip, I learn something different about how this river has changed. On the bottom of the screen, just past half way, the river just takes a huge short cut and cuts over and connects to a different part of the same river. This happens on the whole river too. there are 8 or 9 huge bends and curves in the river but by the end in 2012 there are only about 3 to 4 bends and curves. For some reason the water is taking short cuts and just leaving the spaces where the water used to run through and leaving it dry.  

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Why the Violence in Mexico is Getting Worse

"Mass killings have become increasingly common across Mexico due to the country's ongoing war on drugs. Cartels and gangs, often working with help from local police, are murdering innocent victims by the dozens and leaving them in unmarked graves. So just how bad is the violence in Mexico, and what is the Mexican President doing to stop it?"

Seth Dixon's insight:

Read the transcript of the video here, that link is also a nice resource for to do some additional research on the topic.

Tags: Mexico, narcotics.

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, November 14, 2:45 PM

The war on drugs has destroyed thousands of lives in Mexico.  Despite efforts from government officials to dismantle the drug system in the country, it seems as if their efforts are going nowhere. With the dismantling of large drug gangs and the capturing of 30 out of 37 most wanted drug lordes in Mexico, it gives the illusion that government officials finally has a control over this ordeal. Rather, it has destroyed large drug groups and created smaller ones. With the new president in office, I don't think all of his efforts to wage the war on drugs is beneficial. How is allowing drug lordes to keep their weapon beneficial to stopping the war on drugs in Mexico?

Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 25, 2:08 PM

The last president of Mexico reported 26,000 people missing; the current president reported only 8,000. After public outcry however the number was raised to 16,000. According to human rights groups, all three of those estimates are lowballed compared to what the real number should be. There has been over 70,000 drug related violence since 2006. The reason for almost all of Mexico’s increase in violence is the government targeting the leaders of the cartels, arresting 30 out of 37 major cartel leaders. What this did was break each cartel into little cartel factions which increased the frequency in violence. When the new president came in, he decided to focus more on local law enforcement stopping local drug related violence. The corruption in local law enforcement is wide spread, which is the reason why violence is still eminent in Mexico. Basically, the police is working with the cartels, and to go even deeper into that I would even go as far as to say the government is working with the cartels.   

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Changing The World, One Map At A Time

Maps have always been a source of fascination and intrigue. Today's maps, however, can also help to save lives during disasters, document human rights abuses and monitor elections in countries under repressive rule. This presentation will explain how today's live maps can combine crowds and clouds to drive social change.
Seth Dixon's insight:

On this Thanksgiving, I want to remind this community that geospatial skills can be used to help othersWant to see geographic knowledge and geospatial skills in action?  Crowd-sourced mapping is increasingly an important resource during an emergency.  Poorer places are often not as well mapped out by the commercial cartographic organizations and these are oftentimes the places that are hardest hit by natural disasters.  Relief agencies depend on mapping platforms to handle the logistics of administering aid and assessing the extent of the damage and rely on these crowd-sourced data sets made by people like you and me. 

Tagsdisasters, mapping, cartographyTED201, video.

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Giant Concrete Arrows Across America

Giant Concrete Arrows Across America | Geography Education |
Every so often, a hiker or a backpacker will run across something puzzling: a ginormous concrete arrow, as much as seventy feet in length, just sitting in the middle of scrub-covered America. What are these giant arrows? Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings solves the mystery.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is fascinating...just because a technology is old and outdated in modern society doesn't mean it wasn't ingenious.  The original mathematicians who calculated angles and distances study geometry so they could navigate and 'measure the Earth.' Before GPS, these giant arrows helped pilots navigate across the United States; they are part of the genealogical strands of navigational technology.   Mathematics can be incredibly spatial as well as geospatial.   

Tagsmapping, GPS, math, geospatial, location, historical.

Rich Schultz's curator insight, November 26, 1:35 PM

Very intriguing!

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Country, Nation, State

"While the terms country, state, and nation are often used interchangeably, there is a difference."

Seth Dixon's insight:

These words are messy and this talk seeks to define them more precisely so that we can more fully understand political geographic complexity. 

The concept of the nation-state emerged out of particular historical context as this video demonstrates.  Additionally, here is another video that is a straightforward explanation of important vocabulary terms for a political geography unit.

Tags: political, states.

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If Roads Were Like Bike Lanes

If Roads Were Like Bike Lanes | Geography Education |
For those brief moments that you happen to be in a bike lane, biking in the city is wonderful. But it always seems that bike lanes end before they even begin, just like a summer romance or a slice ...
Seth Dixon's insight:

It's just a joke, but good comedy has a nugget of truth that shines a light on the inconsistencies of the human experience.  This really highlights the priorities given to various modes of transportation as we allocate public space for them. 

Tags: transportation, planning.

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Mistrust Threatens Delicate Balance at a Sacred Site in Jerusalem

Mistrust Threatens Delicate Balance at a Sacred Site in Jerusalem | Geography Education |
A site in the Old City of Jerusalem, known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary, has been a flash point since the advent of modern Zionism.
Seth Dixon's insight:

There has been turmoil and violence in Jerusalem this month; at it's core, much of the fighting has been around the political control of sacred spaces that are seen as critical to both groups' cultural and religious identity.  This particular sacred place is intertwined with both Judaism as well as Islam, and understanding the current round of violence demands that we understand some of the historical geography of religion in Jerusalem.  To explore more about sacred sites in general as a spatial concept, visit this link

Tagsreligion, culture, Islam, Israel, Palestine, territoriality, political, Middle East.

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Asian Border Disputes

Asian Border Disputes | Geography Education |

Tags: borders, political, conflict, infographic, map.

Asie(s)'s curator insight, November 23, 10:23 PM

A good overview on the matter!

Kevin Barker's curator insight, November 25, 8:20 AM

A great primer for discussions over border disputes.  In this modern geopolitical climate, some of these claims can seem aggressive to say the least.  The strategies/responses can also be very interesting when military options are put aside.

Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 25, 12:36 PM

I was looking at the disputes between the Paracel Islands, the Spratly Islands, and the Scarborough Shoal. What I notices with all oft he disputes, the land being fought over is all claimed by China but the land location itself is all closer to the country china is disputing it over. For the Paracel Islands, China and Vietnam are in dispute especially after China put 2 oil rigs by their land. The other dispute between the Spratly Islands, China and the Philippines each claim entire ownership of the lands but Malaysia, Indonesia, and Brunei all claim some part of the islands as well. For the Scarborough Shoal, it is a lot closer to the Philippines than it is to China but China claims it as their own since they discovered the land. Now china has restricted access to the island following a standoff.    

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Thanksgiving Resources

Thanksgiving Resources | Geography Education |

"Thanksgiving has some fascinating spatial, historical and cultural components to are some of my favorite teaching resources to use as Thanksgiving approaches."

Tags: Thanksgiving, food, seasonal.

Miles Gibson's curator insight, November 23, 12:13 PM

Unit 1 nature and perspectives of geography

This map shows the consumption of sweet potato pie on thanksgiving in the u.s. it also shows the production of these pies also. It is also interesting how the south is again labeled and stereotyped in a certain way of being irrelevant or redneck.

This map relates to unit 1 because it shows the functional regions of local sweet potato pie production. It also shows the parts of the south as the most consuming people. Again pinning the south as weak and less educated. This is a possible vernacular map also because of that.

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Here's what 9,000 years of breeding has done to corn, peaches, and other crops

Here's what 9,000 years of breeding has done to corn, peaches, and other crops | Geography Education |
Corn, watermelon, and peaches were unrecognizable 8,000 years ago.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I think the term 'artificial' in the image might be misleading and it depends on your definition of the word.  Humans have been selectively breed plants and animals for as long as we've been able to domestic them; that is a 'natural' part of our cultural ecology and has lead to great varieties of crops that are much more suitable for human consumption than what was naturally available.  Long before climate change, humans have been actively shaping their environment and the ecological inputs in the systems with the technology that their disposal.  This is a good resource to teach about the 1st agricultural revolution.     

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, unit 5 agriculture.

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The Great Mosque of Djenné

The Great Mosque of Djenné, Mali, is a magnet for tourists, but it is increasingly difficult for locals to live a normal life around it.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This New York Times short video is an intriguing glimpse into some of the cultural pressures behind having the designation of being an official world heritage site.  The great mosque combined with the traditional mud-brick feel to the whole city draws in tourists and is a source of communal pride, but many homeowners want to modernize and feel locked into traditional architecture by outside organizations that want them to preserve an 'authentic' cultural legacy.

Tags: Islam, tourism, place, religion, culture, historical, community, Mali, Africa.

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Uganda planning new anti-gay law

Uganda planning new anti-gay law | Geography Education |

"Uganda plans to introduce a new anti-gay law that will withstand any legal challenge, a government minister has told the BBC. It will not explicitly refer to homosexuality, but will rely on the penal code which prescribes a life sentence for 'unnatural acts', he said. Activists say the plan is more draconian than anti-gay legislation annulled by the courts in August. The US and other donors cut funding to Uganda in protest against the law. Uganda is a deeply conservative society where homosexual acts are already illegal."

Tag: sexuality, Uganda.

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The largest city in Brazil is running dangerously low on water

The largest city in Brazil is running dangerously low on water | Geography Education |
Thanks to the worst drought in eight decades, millions of people in São Paulo are facing water outages.

Tags: Brazil, urban, water, urban ecology, climate change, environment depend, sustainability, agriculture, food production.

Miles Gibson's curator insight, November 23, 12:30 PM

Unit 1 nature and perspectives of geography

This map shows the time lapse of a lake in Sao Paulo in Brazil and shows how the water is running low.

This relates to unit 1 because it shows the maps as It is a GPS map and a GIS layering map. This a basic definable part of this unit because of its maps, scale, sense of place, identity, and overall relativity. This is a simple GIS layering map over the Jaguari resovoir.

Adilson Camacho's curator insight, November 23, 4:59 PM

adicionar a sua visão ...

Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 25, 12:49 PM

Brazil’s largest city, Sao Paulo, which provides one third of the countries GPD, is now running low or water due to one of the worst droughts in 8 years. There are more than 21 million people in this city and 13 million of them are facing water outages. If it doesn't rain soon, the city could face a collapse. The city has blamed the drought of lack of water in the vapor clouds that the amazon usually provides to the city. They also blame it on deforestation and global warming. President Dilma Rousseff has questioned the cities misusage of their water supply, claiming that the city mismanaged their water supply.  

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Power of Place: Boundaries and Borderlands

Power of Place: Boundaries and Borderlands | Geography Education |

"This program, Boundaries and Borderlands, introduces the case study approach of the course. Here we examine the borderland region between the regions of North America and Latin America. The first case study, Twin Cities, Divided Lives, follows the story of Concha Martinez as she crosses between the U.S. and Mexico in order to make a life for herself and her children.  The second case study, Operation Hold the Line, follows up the question of cross-border migration raised in the first program. It takes a look at how U.S. border policy is shaping the lives of not only the people living in this borderland region, but in more distant U.S. and Mexican locations as well."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a not a new resource and I know that many of you are familiar with it, but this is worth repeating for those not familiar with the Annenberg Media's "Power of Place" video series.  With 26 videos (roughly 30 minutes each) that are regionally organized, this be a great resource for geography teachers that need either a regional of thematic case-study video clip.     

Tagsmigrationregions video, APHG.

Dennis Swender's curator insight, November 17, 3:16 AM

Open borders:  An American Exceptionalism asset worth preserving?

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How harsh environments make you believe in God (or gods)

How harsh environments make you believe in God (or gods) | Geography Education |
A new study links climatic instability and a lack of natural resources to belief in moralizing gods in cultures around the world.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I’m not posting this in spite of its controversial nature—I am sharing this precisely because it has raised eyebrows.  Many have read this and seen elements of environmental determinism in the cultural analysis of religions (despite the researcher’s insistence that their findings should not be taken as a form of geographical determinism).

While there appears to be a correlation between a belief in moral god(s) and a harsh environment, others could also look at this map and see the mapping of poverty, colonialism or historical evangelism.  Environmental determinism was used to justify colonialism and racist ideologies, geography fully rejected anything with even a hint of environmental determinism.  Geographers are hypersensitive to the critique of environmental determinism; that is why it is difficult to find modern geographic research that knocks on the door of determinism. 

Questions to Ponder: How much environmental determinism is in this research?  What alternatives exist to environmental determinism?  How much of a factor is the environment in shaping cultural patterns? 

Tags: environment, religion, culture,  unit 1 GeoPrinciples.

Scott Langston's curator insight, November 16, 6:25 PM

Inspiring faith? Is God an environmental construct?