Human Geography is Everything!
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Geographic Influences of Skating

"Dogtown and Z-Boys: A documentary about the pioneering 1970s Zephyr skating team."


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, October 9, 2014 1:53 PM

Popular culture is shaped by taste-makers, counter-cultural movements, and the blending of cultural practices in new ways creating a distinct aesthetic. Often, the physical geography of a region plays a crucial role in shaping the cultural practices particular to their environment. All of that can be seen quite vividly in the colorful skating revolution of the 1970s that took shape in the Southern California. Kids who grew up idolizing surfers branched out their recreational habits into the modern form of skating that we see today at the X Games. Made legendary through a series of Skateboarder magazine articles, these kids shaped the cultural ethos of skateboarding for over a generation. With the coastal influence of surfing, the socioeconomics of a seaside slum, it’s abandoned piers, the ubiquity of cement and asphalt in the urban landscape, the run-down neighborhood of “Dogtown” was home to cultural movement. The fierce droughts of the 1970 meant abandoned swimming pools; that drought led surfers to the technological infrastructure for modern skating ramps and half pipes as they skated in emptied swimming pools. As stated in those Skaterboarder articles, “two hundred years of American technology has unwittingly created a massive cement playground of unlimited potential. But it was the minds of 11 year olds that could see that potential.” The documentary “Dogtown and Z-Boys” (trailer) and the fictionalized “Lords of Dogtown,” (trailer) both produced by skater turned filmmaker Stacy Peralta, chronicle the age (“Lords of Dogtown” is not appropriate for the K-12 classroom viewing).


Tags: place, spacesport, California, landscapevideo, popular culture, music.

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San Diego

Ever since I was a kid, I have always been mesmerized by extraordinary beauty of my hometown, San Diego. The city has many hidden treasures that have always captivated…

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, May 16, 2014 2:22 PM

While there are wildfires raging in northern San Diego county (see interactive map), my heart goes out to family and friends there.  The recent drought in California makes the condition perfect for wildfires to spread.  This video is a nice glimpse of San Diego during better times.  

   

Tagsweather and climate, Californiawater, environment, urban ecology.

Arslan Chaudhary's curator insight, May 17, 2014 1:19 PM

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This 19th Century Map Could Have Transformed the West

This 19th Century Map Could Have Transformed the West | Human Geography is Everything! | Scoop.it
Today's drought-riven west would look very different if Congress had listened to John Wesley Powell

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, June 11, 2014 4:33 PM

Author of Mapping the Nation, Susan Schulten explains how western expansion failed to recognize the basic physical geographic reality of the United States--that the west is much drier than the east.  Given that much of the west, especially California, is in the midst of a severe drought, this article serves as a reminder to recognize that localized understandings of human and environmental actions are necessary.  Do you know what watershed you live in?  How does and should that impact us?   


Tags: physical, historical, California, water, environment.

Sylvain Rotillon's curator insight, July 1, 2014 8:11 AM

We are very proud in France thinking we created the watershed approach with the 1964' water law, present basis for EU's water framework directive. Now, I would say that John W Powell is the true creator of watershed management. It's a blow to French pride...

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Boontling: A Lost American Language

Boontling: A Lost American Language | Human Geography is Everything! | Scoop.it
Watch the video Boontling: A Lost American Language on Yahoo! Screen

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, January 12, 2013 4:53 PM

In Booneville, CA, local residents literally created their own language over 150 years ago and had it was locally accepted enough to be taught within the school district.  This language of Boontling (Boont Lingo) but one that the younger generation has not fully adopted, but is still spoken by the older residents. 


Tags: folk culture, language, culture, rural, unit 3 culture, California.