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Geography Education
Geography Education
Global news with a spatial perspective: Interesting, current supplemental materials for geography students and teachers. http://geographyeducation.org
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Safe drinking water disappearing fast in Bangladesh

Safe drinking water disappearing fast in Bangladesh | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Extreme weather increases salinity of water in coastal areas while excessive demand in Dhaka leaves dwindling supply
Seth Dixon's insight:

In what ways is access to safe drinking water both a physical geography and human geography issue?  How do changes in one factor influence the others? 


Tags: Bangladesh, water, development.

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Tracy Klug's curator insight, December 16, 2013 5:47 AM

How can the globe evenly distribute surplus goods?

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 7:38 PM

The article describes the difficulties in obtaining safe drinking water in Bangladesh. As a result of climate change, rainfall has become sporadic and irregular resulting in sea water entering the underground aquifers which are depleted due to the immense population of the country. Similarly, the natural geography of the inland areas is contaminating the water with silt due to flooding and erosion.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 12, 8:21 PM

This article describes how drinking water is becoming difficult to find in Bangladesh. Due to climate change, this problem will only get worse. Extreme weather such as floods and cyclones has played a large role in contaminating the drinking water. Even in Dhaka, the world's fastest growing city, the people are having trouble finding safe drinking water. 

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Indian Independence and the Question of Partition

The partition of 1947, which led to the creation of India and Pakistan, was one of the most volatile events of the twentieth century. Partition coincided with the end of British colonial rule over the subcontinent, and Indian independence was overshadowed by violence, mass displacement, and uncertainty.

The scholars in this video were interviewed for the Choices Program curriculum, "Indian Independence and the Question of Partition". For more information, visit the Choices Program.

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Tony Aguilar's curator insight, November 13, 2013 12:23 PM

This issue was partition was very disheartening for the movement involving passive resistance. They paid a great price to remove Brittish rule but unfortuntaley could not keep the nation together under a united Hinduism and Muslim rule. Ghandi specifically was very sad. They insisted that the Hindus would enslave the muslims so they needed two seperate states india and Pakistan. The nation of Bangledesh. is also descendant of India people as well,1947 set the tone for what happened in the US CIvil rights movement with Dr. King. Before the partiton agreement with Britian, they were able to demonstrate that social change could be achieved in this revolutionary way.

steve smith's curator insight, November 13, 2013 1:38 PM

Great for Level One Geography - population studies

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Bootlegging in Tribal Pakistan

Bootlegging in Tribal Pakistan | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In Pakistan's tribal areas, alcohol bootleggers, lured by enormous profits, have created clandestine delivery services to evade recent crackdowns by the Taliban and the police.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This 2010 New York Times video shows in a poignant way how the past and the present, the global and the local comibine to create underground cultural practices among the wealthy in Pakistan. 


Tags: Pakistan, popular culture, SouthAsiaglobalization, culture, Islam.

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Courtney Burns's curator insight, November 1, 2013 10:34 AM

It is crazy to think that alcohol is illegal in Pakistan. In the US is so easily accessible that I never really thoughout about it in other places. In Pakistan it is illegal to sell or consume alcohol. However this doesn't mean that it is not there. Selling alcohol is a very risky business. Getting cuaght with alcohol at the very least ends in a $350 fine or a police bribe. However this the minimum punishment. Many bootleggers have been shot and killed trying to sneak the alcohol in. This is why the risk is so high and many people try to keep their bootlegging to a minimum. Many of the men get upset when they get big orders becuase it means that there is more of a chance to get caught.  They said a small buisness makes about $4,000 a year, which may seem small to us in the US, but it is 3 times the average salary in Pakistan. However there are some bootleggers who make up to $30,000. WIth this being said because alcohol is illegal and the business is so risky alcohol is not cheap, which means for the most part alcohol is mostly consumed and sold to the rich. However is it easy to find. Getting alcohol in Pakistan to bootleg was compared to ordering pizza in the US. But it comes at a price. It is amazing how their Islamic culture impacts them so much. One guy even said that he wouldn't tell his parents he drinks alcohol because in Islam it's basically considerd a sin. It is amazing how different things are. Throughout the video none of the men showed their faces, and were even scared that the camera was present. It is amazing to me how different things are in Pakistan, and that people risk their lives to sell alcohol. 

Jacqueline Landry's curator insight, December 15, 2013 7:40 AM

Bootlegging is more of a class status issue, the rich want it and they buy more liquor than the lower, middle class. there religion says it is a sin to drink and everyone listens. 

I think it is crazy that they think drinking is compared to adultery. I think because we live in a society were drinking is a norm, most gatherings involve some kind of alcohol, whether it be toasting to a special occasion or grabbing a drink to catch up with an old friend. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:21 AM

The video showed an interesting report on bootlegging in Pakistan.  The comment at the end was the most interesting to me.  A person interviewed said that the society used to be more open and free but now they are not.  The rich can do as they like but the people cannot.  The dangers of bootlegging is such that if the police catch you then you will be arrested or have to pay a bribe but if the Taliban catch you then you will be killed.

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Assessing the Validity of Online Sources

Assessing the Validity of Online Sources | Geography Education | Scoop.it

This is a fabulous map---but is the statement true?


Seth Dixon's insight:

I present this map (hi-res) without any context to my students and ask the question: is this statement true?  How can we ascertain the truthfulness of this claim?  What fact would we need to gather?  This exercise sharpens their critical thinking skills and harnesses the assorted bits of regional information that they already have, and helps them evaluate the statement.

The answers to these questions can be found here.

 

Tags: density, social media, East Asia, South Asia.

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lalita pradeep's curator insight, May 14, 2013 7:34 PM

wow....lovely map.........

Sascha Humphrey's curator insight, May 15, 2013 1:52 AM

It's quite amazing!

Courtney Burns's curator insight, November 26, 2013 5:45 AM

When we first looked at this picture in class there was no way that I thought this map could be true. We are warned all the time to be careful what we look at on the internet, because for the most part a lot of the information is not true. When we looked at this photo in class we zoomed in on the area in the circle and first determined what was included  in that circle. Once we were able to detrmine what cities were within that circle we were then able to look up the population in each of those cities. We added up the total of each city to get the total population of the places within the circle. Then we researched the total population of the world. Once we were able to find this we subtracted the population from within the circle from the total population, and what we were left with was smaller than the total population within the circle. Which means that the map was true. I was shocked. There was no way that I thought this was true. What was interesting to me was the process we went through to determine that this map was even true. We had to detrmine the area we were working with and then research the information to get a solution. I think you learn a lot just by this simple picture. This map happened to be true however there are many picture listed under this map that are untrue that we are faced with all the time, that if we took the time to research we woudl realize are silly pictures. Just by researching information about a picutre like this can teach us a lot about a place. 

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Tea-plucking machines threaten Assam livelihoods

Tea-plucking machines threaten Assam livelihoods | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Tea plucking machines are threatening the livelihoods of tea pickers in the Indian state of Assam, reports Mark Tully.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is yet another example of the uneven impacts of globalization. 

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Al Picozzi's curator insight, November 11, 2013 10:03 AM

To modernize or not?  A great question.  Young people don't want to do this traditional work, it is expensive for the owners while others are using machines, the quality may be better, but the other brands are cheaper and selling more.  They exports have dropped becuase of the price of cheaper teas that don't have the same quality, but it seems that price is the more determining factor.  What is the owner to do?  If he changes and sells more his quality goes down, and a ton of people lose their jobs, however with less and less people willing to do the work...is it even necessary to keep this way???  A vicious circle..I think so.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:35 AM

I found it interesting that the estates choose to maintain a womb to tomb economy for their workers.  The cost they said was higher than in other tea producing models but they felt that it was something that safeguarded quality.  The introduction of machines would not only reduce quality but it would reduce the workforce, which would displace workers.  But this choice may be taken from them as younger workers leave to find work elsewhere. 

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 1:42 AM

This article details how globalization is damaging the high-end tea industry of India. The Assam company, which produces high quality tea, is under pressure to mechanize their 100% human tea production due to competition. Vietnam, Kenya, and even other Indian companies produce significantly cheaper tea due to their willingness and ability to cut costs by using machines and paying their workers less. A cultural stigma toward tea workers is making hiring difficult for Assam, compounding the problems with competitors and forcing a switch to mechanization which will produce an inferior product.

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Booming Bhutan

Booming Bhutan | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Long impoverished and isolated, tiny Bhutan is finally booming. This onetime absolute monarchy has also made important democratic reforms and major improvements in quality of life.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Located on the southern edge of the Himalayas, Bhutan's rugged topography is key to it's economic strategy to modernize this lightly populated, less developed mountain kingdom.  Bhutan is harnessing hydroelectric energy and selling it to India, which accounts for 20% of the GDP. Today Bhutan is one the five fastest growing economies in the world.  However, the economic developed is highly uneven; 40% of the population is still engaged in subsistence farming on the limited arable land showing that there are still substantial development issues ahead.

 

Tags: South Asia, development, economic, rural, Bhutan.

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Rapes Cases Show Clash Between Old and New India

Rapes Cases Show Clash Between Old and New India | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A boom and social change are pitting young working women in the city against men from conservative villages.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The recent resurgence of this issue had me looking through the archives and stumbled upon this 2011 article.  As urban expansion is booming in many Indian cities, the modern city expands into the countryside.  The cultural values of these two demographic groups are quite distinct.  Young, educated women are part of the modern cities' workforce but in many conservative, traditional Indian villages, women working outside the home are seen as "lacking in virtue."  In many of the recent gang rape cases, the perpetrators are less educated young men from surrounding villages and the victims are well-educated young working women that are a part of the new city.    


Public spaces, especially at night, are seen as masculine spaces in most traditional societies.  One of the mothers of an accused rapist succinctly explained this mindset thusly: "If these girls roam around openly like this, then the boys will make mistakes."  This is seen as 'Eve teasing,' where women are perceived as responsible for the violence committed against them to maintain social order.  As another article hints, the outrage that this incident ignited could lead towards long-term change in Indian society.   


This other NY Times article op-ed states, "India must work on changing a culture in which women are routinely devalued. Many are betrothed against their will as child brides, and many suffer cruelly, including acid attacks and burning, at the hands of husbands and family members.  India, a rising economic power and the world’s largest democracy, can never reach its full potential if half its population lives in fear of unspeakable violence."


Tags: India, migration, South Asia, culture, urban, folk culture, megacities.

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Al Picozzi's curator insight, November 12, 2013 9:20 PM

It hard to report rape cases even here in the US.  It must be ten fold that in places like India, and much of the middle east, where women traditionally in thse areas of the world as always been in a lower status of men.  The women for years, for generations in fact have always been told that their place in lower than that of men. That if something happened to them it must be their fault.  However with globalization and access to the world as a whole, women, and the men, of these societies have been shown that this is not what it is like in the rest of the world.  The women do not have to accept what they have been told even though it has been drilled into their head over and over.  With women in India inceasing their percentage in the workforce, and being education this extreme situation is going to slowly change.  There have been alot of negative aspects of globalization, this however may well be one of the postive aspects of globalization, especially to the women in the areas of the world where this type of behavior is all too common. 

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 6, 1:47 PM

It appears the lifestyle of young educated women living in modern cities are quite different than the tradition villagers living in the countryside. As urban expansion is taking place, these two types of people are coming together. Unfortunately, the conservative villagers are raping some of the young modern women. Apparently the villagers typically do not see young women walk freely during the night, and as a result the men are mistreating and raping the women. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:50 AM

The rapid modernization of India along with the rural attitudes and male centric society makes it difficult for women who are raped to get justice.  Mostly because to come forward as a rape victim will take their honor away.  If they have to admit it happened then their lives will be ruined.  Even when their family stands behind them, the women are in fear and one almost killed herself because she felt pressured to testify.  The men who rape these women are from the small villages around the area and feel free to do as they please because they do not fear that their victims will report the abuse.  Things will not change until attitudes towards women and rape change in this area. 

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Photos that bear witness to modern slavery

TED Talks For the past two years, photographer Lisa Kristine has traveled the world, documenting the unbearably harsh realities of modern-day slavery.



Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a chilling glimpse into the worst and darkest side of the economic systems of geography and labor in the world. It is estimated that there are more than 25 million people who today live in state that can be described as modern-day slavery. We should not discuss slavery only in the past tense, and yet it conflicts with how most people conceptualize the world today.


Questions to Ponder: How can this even be happening in the 21st century? What geographic and economic forces lead to these situations portrayed in this TED talk? What realistically could be done to lessen the amount of slavery in the world today?


Tags: TED, labor, economic, class, poverty, South Asia, Africa, video.

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Kyle Toner's comment, November 6, 2012 9:17 AM
This video truly opened eyes into the conflict of modern day slavery. I had no idea just how prevalent, global and horrible this situation is.
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Jodhpur - India's Blue City

Jodhpur - India's Blue City | Geography Education | Scoop.it

DB: The aesthetics of architecture within a society not only reveal the communities interpretation of what is considered beautiful or pleasing in appearance but also differentiates between what is considered sacred or important. The symbolic significance of aesthetics in colors, designs and a place of residence can be indicative of socioeconomic standing is within society and what the community values.  Jodhpur, India is well known for the beautiful wave of blue houses that dominate the landscape of a rather dry region. However, it is believed that these blue houses originally were the result of ancient caste traditions. 


Brahmins (who were at the very top of the caste system) housed themselves in these “Brahmin Blue” homes to distinguish themselves from the members of other castes. Now that the Indian government officially prohibits the caste system, the use of the color blue has become more widespread. Yet Jodhpur is one of the only cities in India that stands steadfast to its widespread aesthetics obsession with the color blue which is making it increasingly unique, creating a new sense of communal solidarity among its residence.

 

Questions to Consider: How has color influenced the cultural geography of this area?  How are the aesthetics of this community symbolic of India’s traditional past, present and possible future?


Tags: South Asia, culture, housing, landscape, unit 3 culture.

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The Living Bridge

In North East India just north of Bangladesh is the province of Meghalaya. 


This is an astounding video that shows a (literally) natural way that local people have adapted to an incredibly flood-prone environment.  The organic building materials prevent erosion and keep people in contact during times of flood.  The living bridges are truly a sight to behold. 


Tags: environment, environment adapt, SouthAsia, water, weather climate, indigenous.

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megan b clement's curator insight, December 16, 2013 9:38 AM

This video is so cool. It shows the indigenous people using the enviroment to the fullest. THese resourceful people do not even kill the tree when they use it to build the living bridges to cross over the rough waters. They actually have a community of living bridges that help the people to get from point a to point b safely. They keep the bridges alives by intertwinning them with one another to hold them up across the water. THe video itself is too cool, especially that people even thought of this!

Maegan Connor's curator insight, December 17, 2013 7:16 PM

This is so, so awesome.  These people have suffered at the hands of nature for generations and now they have figured out how to use nature to solve the problem.  They have constructed bridges with trees that takes hundreds of years to fully form so they pass it through their family generations to make life easier.  India endures a harrowing monsoon season with many floods and landslides every year and these bridges will help the people to carry on with their lives above the river's reach. These people indigeous to the region deserve so much credit for the innovative ways they have discovered to deal with nature in it's angriest forms.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 8:01 PM

This video shows how innovative people can be due to physical geography. In Northeast India, monsoon season creates raging rivers and floods which destroy the banks and wash away any normal bridges. The people of the Meghalaya province have devised a creative solution which solves both problems. By planting strangling fig plants, the roots reinforce the river banks and are then coaxed across the river creating a living bridge which can last for centuries.

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Wild rice gene gives yield boost

Wild rice gene gives yield boost | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A gene from wild Indian rice plants can significantly raise the yield of common varieties in nutrient-poor soils by boosting root growth.

 

While many are leery of GMOs (with good reasons linked to health), it is important to recognize that there is society value to agricultural research that works on improving yields.  This article would be a good "other side of the coin" resource to share when discussing GMOs.   

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World's Biggest Power Blackout in Human History Hits India

The second day of India's power grid failures were worse than the first. Nearly 1900 miles of India went dark, an area that is home to nearly half of India's...

 

How is this issue geographic?  What themes are present in this issue and how are they interrelated? 

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Why there's an alarming rash of suicides among Dalit students

Why there's an alarming rash of suicides among Dalit students | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Despite the country’s claims to be a sleek 21st-century meritocracy, the habits of centuries of discrimination and social exclusion are not so easily shaken.

 

India is modernizing at a rapid pace, but some old class problems rooted in the caste system are still visible.  This is part of a large series called "Breaking Caste" with some excellent videos, articles and personal vignettes to humanize the struggles of those at the bottom of the social hierarchy.   

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Stacey Jackson's curator insight, May 8, 2013 5:34 PM

This was a very sad story to read. It's a shame that many Dalit students feel ostracized at elite Indian institutions, so much so some go as far as to commit suicide. This is a terrible personal loss for the families and neighbors of the students. But it also is unfortunate news for the country as a whole. India's economic and social growth likely depends on moving beyond old views on class and cate.

Cam E's curator insight, April 1, 8:20 AM

This is interesting in that it's not some silent discrimination, but an extremely overt one where many of these people are being told to their faces that they will not be allowed to pass. My greatest respect goes out to those who fight the hardest for what they want and they must keep trying to achieve it, but sadly those in a position of power in the society were direct barriers to their progress, causing their hope to be lost and the Dalit students to commit suicide.

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Muslims masquerade as Hindus for India jobs

Muslims masquerade as Hindus for India jobs | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Facing religious discrimination in the Hindu-dominated job market, many are forced to assume fake identities.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is not that uncommon in India unfortunately.  As the articles states, a government commission was appointed in 2005 to investigate the degree to which Muslims were disadvantaged in social, economic and educational terms.  The commission concluded the socio-economic condition of most Muslims was as bad as that of the Dalits, who are at the bottom rung of the Hindu-caste hierarchy, also referred to as the "untouchables." 


Tags: labor, industry, economic, poverty, India.

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Al Picozzi's curator insight, December 10, 2013 10:02 PM

Hiding their idenity to get a job or to even live.  Much like many Jewish people did to survive in Hitler's Germany.  They pretened to be Catholic, Protestant anything but Jewish.  They did what they had to do to survive. The same is gong on in India, not on the scale of genocide, concentration camps, forced labor, etc., but it still is a form of opperession of a minority group in the largest "democracy" in the world.  It dates back to the partitiion of India after British rule.  Many Muslims were forced to migrated to what was then either West or East Pakistan, which is now Bangledesh.  Not all left.  There are about 127,000,000 Muslims in Indian manking it the second largest population of Muslims behind Indonesia, that is a sizeable minority even in a country of over 1 billion.  The nation overall would benefit from equality in the job maket in that there probably many skilled workers in a basically untouched labor pool.  The US has regulations against hiring practices based on one's religious belief, as well as age, gender, race etc., it is something that India might take an example from.  I know the US isn't perfect on its labor relations in the past, but we have been doing a good job as of late...though there are still lingering issues that will be solved giving time.  I tink its time for India to start becasue it will take a long time for things to change when they at least started.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:03 AM

This article point out the disadvantage Muslims face in India, especially in the lower rung of the economy, in order to gain employment they have to hide their faith and pretend to be something they are not Hindus.  The article also points out that a rise of nationalist groups has further marginalized the Indian Muslims.  This is a sad state of affairs as these people are kept in low status jobs because if they were to show their papers to get a better job they would be turned away.  Discrimination is a human problem that all countries struggle with.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 9:02 PM

This article is about Muslims in India masquerading as Hindu to get jobs. This is a little surprising considering how tolerant Hinduism is of other religions, but this is not so much a religious issue as much as it is a political issue. There is still a Hindu nationalist sentiment among many Indians dating back to the partition which is a part of why this religious discrimination exists.

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Maldives

Maldives | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

The Maldives is a small country in the Indian Ocean composed of 1,200 islands.  Virtually every spot in this country is under 8 feet in elevation.  Pictured above is the capital of Malé, which has the largest population (explore these islands on a variety of scales).   


Questions to Ponder: What physical forces and processes account for the presence of these islands in the Ocean?  In a geological time scale, what does the future hold for these islands.  What would be the main economic assets of the Maldives?  What would be the main economic and environmental concerns of this country?


Tags: density, sustainability, economicenvironment, environment adaptclimate change, urban ecology.

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Victoria McNamara's curator insight, December 12, 2013 9:53 AM

Maldives might be hard to keep for many years due to the fact that it is in the middle of the ocean. Eventually overtime the waves would ruin whatever is on that land. It does not seem like a pratical place to live. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:11 AM

This island country has a strange duality that is not uncommon for poor countries with beautiful natural resources like sandy beaches.  On one hand, it is a place with resorts, which cater to wealthy tourists that are kept separated from the inhabitants of the islands.  On the other hand, they are a poor Muslim society that relies on fishing and tourism for its economic growth.  The precarious nature of their low islands leaves them open to flooding and tsunamis. 

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 1:19 AM

The Maldives are an extremely interesting case of physical geography. They are made of coral and sands which the oceans have deposited on the coral skeleton of the islands. The ringed shape of the islands suggests there was once something in the center of the them which either receded into the ocean or eroded away leaving only the hardened coral rings behind.

 

Economically, the fairly unique nature of these tropical islands makes them an excellent tourist destination and Maldives has a significant tourist industry. Unfortunately, the unique physical geography of the islands makes them extremely vulnerable to tsunami and rising sea levels. If global warming raises the ocean levels a few feet, the majority of the islands will be flooded permanently.

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Burka Avenger

"Burka Avenger is a new Pakistani kids' show about a mild-mannered teacher who moonlights as a burka-clad superhero."

Seth Dixon's insight:

I first learned of the Pakistan's new animated TV series the Burka Avenger last week from an NPR podcast and eagerly wanted to know more.  Some are hailing the Burka Avenger to be Pakistan's answer to Wonder Woman, fighting for the rights of the oppressed.  There has also been a lot of criticism concerning the role of the burka juxtaposed with this heroine.  For many, they see the burka solely as a symbol of female oppression and feel that a heroine shouldn't be donning the clothing of the oppressed (my opinion?--C'mon, it's the logical masked outfit for a female superhero trying to be incognito in the tribal villages of Pakistan).  I find this pairing of traditional gender norms and clothing coupled with pop culture's superhero motifs to be a fantastic demonstration of how cultures mesh together.  Globalization doesn't mean all cultures are the same; we often see highly localized and distinct regional twists on global themes.


Tags: Pakistangender, popular culture, SouthAsiaglobalization, culture, Islam.

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Shelby Porter's curator insight, November 4, 2013 7:13 AM

This short introduction to the television show is comical and seems interesting to many different age groups. It highlights a teacher in a burka helping the children and trying to stop bad people. It shows that gender has nothing to do with the ability to defend and help someone. If this woman can do it in a burka, anyone could. I think it will show a positive message in Pakistan where gender equality isn't fully understood. While many people will treat it as just another crime-fighting television show, hopefully some children will take some positive messages away. 

Marissa Roy's curator insight, December 2, 2013 1:40 PM

My geography class watched this. It is an interesting example of how different cultures can mesh together, such as the Burka Avenger and Wonder Woman. It is really interesting that the Burka Avenger is a school teacher by day, which shows how highly educators are thought of in the society.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:27 AM

This is great!  It is a cute animated trailer to the cartoon series the Burka Avenger!  She wears a burka to hide her identity which it certainly does, and then she kicks the bad guy’s butts!  A great gender reversal in this area, showing women can be a hero and stand up to men.  And she cleverly uses the restrictive clothing to keep her identity concealed. 

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The Rights and Wrongs of Slum Tourism

The Rights and Wrongs of Slum Tourism | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Researchers are heading to Dharavi, Mumbai, to study the impact of slum tours on the residents.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The article leaves me with more questions than answers.  What do the residents think about the tons of tourists wondering through their winding streets?  The very idea of tourism to see poverty in situ in an authentic slum is riddled with power and cultural imbalances.  Why would wealthy tourists from the developed world want to more fully explore the slums in the developing world?  What do you see as the 'wrong' and the 'right' within this situation?   Is slum tourism ethical?

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Ana Cristina Gil's curator insight, November 6, 2013 5:36 PM

I don’t find nothing right about tourist visiting the slum, I feel that the tourist are violating there privacy. They are human being not some historical landmark. If the tourist are not helping this people why are they going? If you are going to visit this places do it because you want to help them, not because you think is interesting their way of living.

Cam E's curator insight, April 1, 8:57 AM

Moral questions are always fun. Personally I don't think going to see slums is all that exploitative in itself, but I would make a distinction between guided tours that cost money, and self-directed tours though. In a guided tour you are paying money to walk through a community and view what life is like for those people, but in a self-directed tour you are just another person walking down the streets and viewing whatever you stumble upon. There are plenty of tours within neighborhoods of different economic value the world over, but these tours are scrutinized because the people touring are as wealthy, or less wealthy, than the people living there. I don't think that a poor community changes this dynamic in an immoral way, as the perceptions of which group is superior come from the own minds of those who feel uncomfortable with it.

 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 6:41 AM

This article rises in interesting question.  Are tours of slums exploitive or beneficial to the slum dwellers?  On the one hand the tours could feel like exploitation and the tourist is viewing attractions at a “zoo”, on the other hand it brings people far removed from slum life in contact with it and can change people’s point of view on the slums.  It can be beneficial if the tour guides donate money to the slums or jobs are sought by slum dwellers to become tour guides.  The question is should slums be hidden away from view or opened up to tourists so that they can see the hardships first hand.  I think that this is an issue that is not clearly black or white; there are many shades of gray involved in this issue.

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Megacities Reflect Growing Urbanization Trend

Read the Transcript: http://to.pbs.org/b6sR86 The capital of the South Asian country Bangladesh, Dhaka, has a population that is booming. However, it stands ...
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a great introduction to the demographic explosion of the slums within megacities.  This is applicable to many themes within geography.   


Tags: Bangladesh, water, pollution, poverty, squatter, planning, density, South Asia, development, economic, megacities.

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Peter Siner's comment, April 30, 2013 2:37 PM
A city that is home to 15 million people… this is a scary thought especially since the idea of massively overpopulated cities is a new trend around the globe. The megacities help house those who cannot live in the rural areas surrounding them. It also shows how growing populations can have quite negative effects. While the city is growing quickly there is also widespread poverty and the city is riddled with slums. High poverty rate generally converts to high crime rate. The impacts of overpopulation have lasting effects on not only the land use but also consumption rates. The example we are given is a small family in which their income was based off of a farm that was washed away, now they are forced to move to Dhaka.
gina lockton's curator insight, June 24, 2013 7:45 PM

This is a good youtube link on Urbanisation

Peter Steffan's curator insight, October 9, 2013 1:51 PM

See attached video clips!

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Inside India’s pop-up city

Inside India’s pop-up city | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Every 12 years, the Kumbh Mela, a centuries-old Hindu pilgrimage, temporarily transforms an empty floodplain in India into one of the biggest cities in the world.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Hindu pilgrims from all over India flock to bathe where it the Yamuna Saraswati Rivers join with the Ganges River for a religious experience.  This is a massive undertaking where the cultural practices create migratory patterns that reshape cities because of a sacred physical geography

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Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 11, 9:21 PM

This article is about the sacred gathering which occurs every 12 years at the merging point of the sacred Hindu rivers. Millions of people bathe in the waters daily during the Kumbh Mela. This sacred physical geography causes a massive human migration and creates a temporary mega-city. The temporary city is an excellent way to experiment with the planning of mega cities which, as evidenced by the problematic physical and human geography of Mexico City, are often not planned so much as just they just expand to meet the needs of the time. Urban planning should be particularly interesting for the people of India as the rapid population growth will cause significant expansion in its cities.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 13, 10:43 AM

Every 12 years Hindus come together for a religious gathering, which results in the creation of a temporary mega city. The millions of people who attend this Hindu pilgrimage create this mega city for 55 days. It is impressive to see a temporary city supply housing, electricity, food and clean drinking water for millions of people. 

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The limits of freedom for educated girls in Malala's Pakistan

The limits of freedom for educated girls in Malala's Pakistan | Geography Education | Scoop.it
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.

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Ryan Amado's curator insight, December 11, 2013 2:03 AM

Malala surely deserves every accolade she has received from her efforts to improve the education of women in Pakistan.  Not only did she stand up to the powers that kept her down, but she continued to do so even after those powers put a bullet in her head. She's an inspiration for all girls not only in Pakistan, but in every place where this is still an issue. 

Jacqueline Landry's curator insight, December 16, 2013 3:44 PM

These girls are being deprived an education because they are females- crazy. And when Malala was trying to make change she was gunned down on the school bus, in front of other kids. I feel sorry for those children, they are the future, why not have them all educated.  I couldn't imagine leaving in a society that my future would be limited. 

Maegan Connor's curator insight, December 17, 2013 6:09 PM

I really love this article because the young girl being interviewed is angry and has had enough of the sexism in Pakistan. Malala Yousafzai has definitely become a role model for girls in her homeland and she has advanced girl's education by a large margin during her fight. The school systems in Pakistan are lacking because of the environments and the materials teachers focus on and Pakistani boys get a very different education in their religious schools but the girls have begun to work harder to equal up to them and make it to universities.  There are still many restrictions on the jobs women can take but girls are beginning to fight that too.  Pakistan has now had female political officials which has shown the generations of schoolgirls that they can truly do anything they set their minds too and Malala has helped prove that the movement can't be stopped by surviving her assassination attempt and continuing to campaign. 

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Why leave the West for India?

Why leave the West for India? | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Rising numbers of people of Indian origin born in the West are moving to the country their parents left decades ago in search of opportunity and a cultural connection, reports the BBC's Rajini Vaidyanathan.


Since 2005, the Indian government has been encouraging people of Indian descent and former Indian nationals to return to India.  For many Indians living in the UK, there are more and better economic opportunities for them within India.   Migrants have many reasons for moving (including cultural factors), but the primary pull factor is most certainly India's ascendant importance in the global economy and rising IT industries. 

 

Tags: India, South Asia, migration, immigration, Europe, colonialism, unit 2 population

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Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 8, 2013 2:13 PM

There is a rising number of Indian origin born in the west that are moving back to India. One reason would be India's economy is growing faster then the US and England's. India has many more opportunities for new wealth and it is attracting the young entrepreneurs as well. Another reason they are moving back is for cultural connection that they are not recieving where they are now. Many have said that they are looked at as different and not accepted and that is why they want to go back to India, so that they feel that acceptance. 

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The Corner Where Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan Meet

The Corner Where Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan Meet | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In the dusty triangle where Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan meet, there is more than one war going on.


Geopolitically, there is a fascinating confluence of competing interests at this border.  This is "the scariest little corner of the world." It's a dangerous place that is often beyond the authority of any of state.  It also represents (depending on how you divide the world up) at the intersection of the three major regions in the area: Central Asia, the Middle East and South Asia.      


Tags: Afghanistan, political, borders, MiddleEast, SouthAsia, Central Asia, unit 4 political.

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Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 15, 2013 6:35 PM

This is a dangerous place with no authority. This area is filled with fighting, bombing and constant war. But this area is also an important intersection for three major regions Central Asia, Middle East, and South Asia. 

Cam E's curator insight, March 4, 8:35 AM

A meeting of different worlds at a border. I can't imagine the things one would see or hear living or growing up on a border of conflict such as this. Refugees are a common site, and no authority can dominate the others, making the area effectively lawless.

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McDonald's Goes Vegetarian — In India

McDonald's Goes Vegetarian — In India | Geography Education | Scoop.it
McDonald's plans to open the first in a series of all-vegetarian restaurants in India next year. But rest assured, in most locations around the world, meat will stay on the menu.


Many of the most successful global companies or brands use highly regional variations that are attuned to local cultural norms and customs.  The McAloo Tikki burger— which uses a spicy, fried potato-based patty — is the Indian McDonald's top seller.


Questions to ponder: What are the forces that lead towards an accelaration of human connectivity around the globe?  What are the postive impacts of this increased connectivity?  What are some negative impacts?  Are these impacts the same in all places?  Explain. 


Tags: Globalization, food, culture, unit 3 culture and SouthAsia.

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Cam E's curator insight, April 1, 8:47 AM

At the very least Mcdonalds is changing its menu to fit the culture, rather than making the entire world eat Big Macs and Cheeseburgers. One would be surprised that many times you don't have to go too far to find variances in fast food menus. Some could say I was a "Big" fan of fast food when I was younger, and I remember the Taco Bell in Arizona selling different food than the one in Rhode Island. Or even Canadian KFCs offering Poutine when they won't right over the border in the US.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 7:05 AM

McDonald’s is a company that is good at adjusting their brand to fit into the markets they are trying to enter.  This shows a positive side to globalization, in my opinion, because it shows that a large company is sensitive to the needs and wants of the place they are going into and is willing to find ways to adapt to the culture they are entering.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 14, 8:21 PM

I believe this is a wise decision by McDonald's to adjust their menu for the people of India who are vegetarian. India's population is over one billion now; many of those people are vegetarian. McDonald's is one of the world's most successful fast food chains and they have a chance to lure millions of new customers into their restaurant. This is a great example of a global company making small changes in order to attract people with specific customs and cultural norms. 

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'Sharp drop' in India poverty

'Sharp drop' in India poverty | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Poverty in India has dropped sharply thanks to increased spending on rural welfare programmes, the country's Planning Commission says.

 

KV: Government intervention has decrease poverty in rural India. More people are getting out of poverty in rural areas than urban areas. Programs funded by the government to help the poor has significantly changed many lives. People are given education, welfare, and proper sanitation. Once assistance is provided to the poor, the welfare and well being drastically changes for the better. As the Indian government prospers because of new business ventures, some of the increased revenue should be set aside to help many regions that are affected by poverty.

 

SD: For more resources on population, see this scoopit topic on the environment and society by KV.

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Bryan Tan's curator insight, February 2, 2013 7:54 AM

After reading this article, I am convinced that the gorverment in India know and want to do something about their currebt situation of being one of the poorest state in the world. Poepla are treated better given benefits, edeucation,welfare of the citizens and hygiene are all being taken care of by the gorverment. The gorvement starts improving their ties with other countries in the world helping it to gain more advantage. This helps to decrease the rate of poverty in India.

luisvivas64@hotmail.'s comment, February 3, 2013 7:19 AM
La pobreza es el càncer de la sociedad humana, ojalà sea posible reducirla, aunque soy escèptico, el dinero es muy sabroso y los pocos que lo tienen no lo sueltan, de allì las revoluciones, guerras ect.
Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 8, 2013 1:56 PM

Poverty in rural India has declined drastically, and much faster then in urban India. The decline is due to increased spending on rural welfare programmes, and rural poverty fell by 8% while urban poverty fell by 4.8%. I think this is great that the government is finally taking action and helping their people, instead of just 'sweeping them under the rug' in a way and pretending the issue isnt there.

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‘Why Should Boys Have All the Fun?’

‘Why Should Boys Have All the Fun?’ | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Rather than focusing on how to make cities safe at any hour for citizens of both genders, the official response has been to curtail women's access to public areas deemed sensitive by authorities.

 

This is an interesting topic to use to debate urban policies and planning issues.  What leads to a safer city for women?  How does the creation of zones not safe for women impact the city long-term?  Think about scale: Is what is best for the city policy what is best for the individual? 

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Kim Vignale's comment, July 16, 2012 7:10 PM
Women in India are outraged due to the decisions the officials have made. Instead of solving the problem fairly, they are covering up the issue. Women are viewed as inferior in many developing countries. The government is enforcing the law by taking the women's freedom away; they aren't allowed in a pub after 8pm. If the law was fair and practical, officials would enforce strict laws on rape and assault and reiterate the seriousness of the crime and consequences.