Red states and blue states? Flyover country and the coasts? How simplistic. Colin Woodard, a reporter at the Portland Press Herald and author of several books, says North America can be broken neatly into 11 separate nation-states, where dominant cultures explain our voting behaviors and attitudes toward everything from social issues to the role of government.
“The borders of my eleven American nations are reflected in many different types of maps — including maps showing the distribution of linguistic dialects, the spread of cultural artifacts, the prevalence of different religious denominations, and the county-by-county breakdown of voting in virtually every hotly contested presidential race in our history,” Woodard writes in the Fall 2013 issue of Tufts University’s alumni magazine. “Our continent’s famed mobility has been reinforcing, not dissolving, regional differences, as people increasingly sort themselves into like-minded communities.”
The death and life of the industrial corridor linking New York and Washington.
This article is a great example of analyzing the landscape to observe changes in any given place. This corridor is home to 8 of the 10 wealthiest counties; at the same time this transportation corridor is also home a half a dozen of the country's most broken cities. Exploring this area is way to analyze the changing economic geographies of the United States. For a visual representation of these same themes, see this 5 minute video that corresponds to this NY Times magazine article.
Tags: industry, economy, unit 6 industy, transportation, neighborhood, landscape.
"Where have immigrants to the U.S. come from? Natalia Bronshtein, a professor and consultant who runs the blog Insightful Interaction, created this fascinating visualization of the number of immigrants to the U.S. since 1829 by country of origin. The graph hints at tragic events in world history. The first influx of Irish occurred during the potato famine in 1845, while the massive influx of Russians in the first decade of the 20th Century was driven by anti-Semitic violence of the Russian pogroms (riots). Meanwhile in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, army conscription and the forced assimilation of minority groups drove people to the U.S. in the early 1900s. Since WWII, Central and South America and Asia have replaced Europe as the largest source of immigrants to the U.S. Immigration shrunk to almost nothing as restrictions tightened during WWII, and then gradually expanded to reach its largest extent ever in the first decade of the 21st Century."
"Originally a religious holiday to honor St. Patrick, who introduced Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century, St. Patrick's Day has evolved into a celebration for all things Irish. The world's first St. Patrick's Day parade occurred on March 17, 1762, in New York City, featuring Irish soldiers serving in the English military. This parade became an annual event, with President Truman attending in 1948. Congress proclaimed March as Irish-American Heritage Month in 1995, and the President issues a proclamation commemorating the occasion each year."
I'm sure most of you have seen the 2008 version of these fantastic maps and cartograms and they've been a go-to reference for me since the last election. The typical red state/blue state map conceals much concerning the spatial voting patterns in the United States and fails to account for the population densities of these distributions. That's what makes this county level voting maps and cartograms so valuable.
Questions to Ponder: What new patterns can you see in the county map that you couldn't see in the state map? What do the cartograms tell you about the United States population?
This data visualization project is a great way to demonstrate the geographic expansion of the United States. This is much more interactive than the typical time lapse video since you can scroll through the maps and explore each map through the interactive features.
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