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Walkerteach Geo
Media and Classroom Hub for Mr. Walker's Geography Class
Curated by Luke Walker
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Protests Persuade Russell Athletic to Rehire Honduran Workers - NYTimes.com

Protests Persuade Russell Athletic to Rehire Honduran Workers - NYTimes.com | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it
The college anti-sweatshop movement persuaded Russell Athletic to agree to rehire 1,200 workers in Honduras.
Luke Walker's insight:

An anti-sweatshop movement in the US convinced a sportswear company to reopen a factory in Honduras that shutdown after works unionized.

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The Real Price of Gold — National Geographic Magazine

The Real Price of Gold — National Geographic Magazine | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it
The Price of Gold: In dollars and suffering, it's never been higher.
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An insightful article about the extraction of gold.

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Congo's Bloody Coltan | Pulitzer Center

Congo's Bloody Coltan | Pulitzer Center | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it
Luke Walker's insight:

So I found this video footage of Congo's Coltan industry. I thought it would go very well with our class discussion of externalities and the true cost of the electronics and products we consume.

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Economic Decline and Sense of Place

"McDowell County, situated in the coalfields of West Virginia, has experienced a great boom-and-bust since 1950. But despite the economic decline and population loss, many still call it home and feel a great sense of purpose among the mountains. Residents speak about their connection to this place and the meaning of 'home.' Hear more stories at hollowdocumentary.com "


Via Seth Dixon
Luke Walker's insight:

Develop your sense of place regarding the coalfields of West Virginia.

What geographic context (location) might create a place like McDowell County, West Virginia?

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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, April 24, 2014 11:27 AM

units 1 & 7

dilaycock's curator insight, April 29, 2014 6:51 PM

Excellent example of urban decline. Would pair nicely with a reading from 'Rocket Boys' by Homer Hickam Jnr, or with the movie version 'October Sky.' The book and movie are the true story of a boy in Coalwood, West Virginia in the 1950s who is determined to  "escape" working in the coal mines to become a rocket scientist.

John Nieuwendyk's curator insight, September 16, 2014 11:02 PM

 McDowell, a once thriving county in the 1950’s ceased to keep up with the ever-chaning world. There was little need for coal after the 1980’s so work became scarce and the “Brain Drain” began. Those looking for a successful future left for there was more choice elsewhere and economically it would make no sense to stay in McDowell. Nevertheless, cultural upbringings paved way to this "Boom and Bust” town, which gave people a sense of place and identity. Though McDowell is economically on the decline the communal relations and sense of place the community holds is still strong. 

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Story of Electronics « The Story of Stuff Project

Story of Electronics « The Story of Stuff Project | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it
Luke Walker's insight:

Very informational video on the subject of electronics and the need for more sustainable production of electronics.

How many cell phones have you had? What will you do when you replace it? Can it be recycled? Can we do better?

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Robert Neuwirth on our "shadow cities" | Video on TED.com

TED Talks Robert Neuwirth, author of "Shadow Cities," finds the world’s squatter sites -- where a billion people now make their homes -- to be thriving centers of ingenuity and innovation. He takes us on a tour.

 

Powerful discussion and argument for the future of squatter communities or shanty towns. A point to consider, by 2050 our cities will hold roughly 6 billion people. How can we deal with the issues of our cities at present and prevent the expansion of squatter communities? How do we incorporate such communities into formal organization of cities?

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Labor standards help Cambodia keep customers - The New York Times

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A cool article on encouraging labor rights and sustainable industry in Cambodia.

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FRONTLINE/World Ghana: Digital Dumping Ground | PBS

FRONTLINE/World Ghana: Digital Dumping Ground | PBS | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it
As this month's digital television conversion makes tens of millions of analog TV's obsolete, and Americans continue to trash old computers and cell phones at alarming rates, FRONTLINE/World presents a global investigation into the dirty secret of the digital age -- the dumping of hundreds of millions of pounds of toxic electronic waste across the developing world. The report also uncovers another dangerous bi-product of a disposable culture – data fraud, as thousands of old hard drives are finding their way into criminal hands.
Luke Walker's insight:

How does this relate to Story of Stuff: Electronics?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sW_7i6T_H78 

Check out this 20 minutes video on the community that surrounds one of the world's most active e-waste dumping ground. 

For additional reading check out these articles:

http://www.newsweek.com/ghanas-e-waste-dump-seeps-poison-68385

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2013/10/inside-ghana-electronic-wasteland-2013103012852580288.html ;

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America’s coal heartland is in economic freefall

America’s coal heartland is in economic freefall | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it
The coal economy in Central Appalachia is in an unprecedented freefall. Which isn't making it easier for workers to move on.

Via Seth Dixon
Luke Walker's insight:

This is relevant to early posts about coalfields in West Virginia.

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Nick Smith's curator insight, September 9, 2014 12:24 PM

This effects the eastern part of our state and our country overall. The fall of the coal field is hurting our economy.

James Hobson's curator insight, September 15, 2014 5:58 PM

(North America post 3)
Built upon from class today, this article discusses the hardship many Appalachian families are feeling as the coal mining business continues to evolve and industrialize. Although coal was the major 'boom' behind many of these towns, the 'bust' hits more than just those laid off by the industry. Like a chain reaction, other families and their businesses suffer; less income leads to less eating out leads to less income for restaurants, and it goes on and on.  This article is also good at showing that geography is more than spatial and economic: on certain levels, it's also relational, personal, cultural, and historic, giving residents strong feelings behind their decisions to stay.

Alec Castagno's curator insight, September 23, 2014 10:44 AM

This video really shows the relationship between sense of place versus economic geography. Even though the town is no longer the rich mining town it once was, the remaining residents still cling to the past and their sense of identity remains strong. It demonstrates that cultural heritage is a powerful factor that can remain long after dramatic economic changes. Even though there are few opportunities left in the town and the majority of its young people leave for greener pastures, some residents still identify so strongly with the area that they are willing to do whatever they can to revitalize their town.

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Wealth Inequality in America

Infographics on the distribution of wealth in America, highlighting both the inequality and the difference between our perception of inequality and the actua...

Via Seth Dixon, Marc Crawford , Mankato East High School
Luke Walker's insight:

Mind blowing and utterly ridiculous.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, March 4, 2013 10:00 AM

This video does have a political bent that may or may not reflect your views, but it nicely lays out data that graphically represents the economic differences that we see in the United States today.  Our perception is as skewed as what is and what we think it should be.  

Ann-Laure Liéval's curator insight, March 6, 2013 2:36 PM

Des Amériques: les Etats Unis. 

Jennifer S. Hong's curator insight, December 27, 2013 3:39 PM

"In a country well governed, poverty is somehing to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of." -Confucius.

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The Global Scale of Migrant Money Flows - Interactive Graphic - NYTimes.com

A new study suggests that 1 in 10 people on the planet directly benefit from money sent home by migrants working in other countries. Here are figures detailing that money's impact on developing nations in 2006.

 

Excellent map that details global money flows, i.e. the migration of money. Remittances is a key issue in the global economy and a great statement about the relationship that exists between the "west" and the "rest"

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Mexico's 'maquiladora' labor system keeps workers in poverty

Mexico's 'maquiladora' labor system keeps workers in poverty | Walkerteach Geo | Scoop.it

Some four decades after welcoming foreign assembly plants and factories, known as maquiladoras, Mexico has seen only a trickle of its industrial and factory workers join the ranks of those who even slightly resemble a middle class.

 

Despite making such consumer goods like BlackBerry smartphones, plasma TVs, appliances and cars that most people in the US, for instance, consider necessities, Mexican workers in these factories seldom get to enjoy these items because, as this article argues, the labor system keeps them in poverty.  Foreign investment in these businesses keep unions out and attracts workers from poorer areas, allowing low-cost labor to prevail.  Less than $8 a day is the going wage - great for the bottom line and consumer prices but very bleak for those who toil in this system.


Via Seth Dixon, Marc Crawford , Mankato East High School
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Olga Varlamov's curator insight, November 23, 2013 8:26 PM

This article talks about how the maquiladora labor system dosen't provide enough money for it's workers. Many in Mexico are living in poverty and can't afford much more than dinner because of their low wages.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:47 PM

The labor system keeps workers in Poverty. This is the argument that is transitioned by stating the fact that many factory workers are and will always remian in poverty if they have no oppurtunity to move up in the food chain and become educated in order to get themselves out of poverty. They need different skills in order to aquire a better job to create a better life.  

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, February 11, 2015 11:33 PM

Its a very sad situation reading this. Seeing people go through all this to just survive. Kids don't even get any education and follow their parents footsteps to work at a plant just to be able to pay for bills. 8 dollars a day, and you wonder why they try to run to united states. Its very unfortunate that a lot of people go through this and i hope it changes soon, because to see that this is going on makes me thankful for what i have around me. Foreign investors are not great as they set out to be take advantage of the poor and get rich out of it, i think its pretty ridiculous.