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Week 3 Notes

by: Karolyn Florek

Week 3 Notes ges 1990

Karolyn Florek
GPA 3.15
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About this Document

These are the notes from chapter 2 in week 3.
Introduction to Human Geography
Irina Kopteva
Class Notes
Culture, Culturalregions




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Karolyn Florek on Thursday September 8, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ges 1990 at University of Colorado Colorado Springs taught by Irina Kopteva in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 7 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Human Geography in Geography at University of Colorado Colorado Springs.


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Date Created: 09/08/16
 A region defined by similar culture traits and cultural landscape features. Core ­ the zone of greatest concentration or homogeneity of the culture traits that characterize a  region. Cultural Landscape ­ modifications to the environment by humans, including the built  environment and agricultural systems that reflect aspects of their culture. Culture ­ the shared understandings that guide behavior and values and condition a group's  perception of the world. Culture is learned from one generation to the next and evolves over  time. Culture Region ­ a region defined by similar culture traits and cultural landscape features. Culture Trait ­ a defining characteristic of the culture that is shared by most, if not all,  members. Domain ­ the area outside of the core of a culture region in which the culture is still dominant  but less intense. Ecological Trilogy ­ the traditional symbiotic relationship among villages, cities, and nomadic  tribes in the Middle East, in which villages grow irrigated crops, cities provide the central  mosque and bazaar, and tribes herd livestock and provide transportation and protection. Formal Region ­ an area of near uniformity (homogeneity) in one or several characteristics. Functional Region ­ a region created by the interactions between a central node and surrounding locations. Perceptual Region ­ an area defined by subjective perceptions that reflect the feelings and  images about key place characteristics. When these perceptions come from the local, ordinary  folk, a perceptual region can be called a vernacular region. Region ­ an area characterized by similarity or by cohesiveness that sets it apart from other  areas. Regional Identity ­ an awareness of being a part of a group of people living in a culture region. Sphere ­ the zone of outer influence for a culture region. Symbols ­ a material object that represents some greater meaning or refers to something else. Syncretism ­ the fusion of two distinctive cultural traits into a unique new hybrid trait.  One of most important aspects of humanity that differentiates people and shapes the places we  create = culture  Culture encompasses – technological (how we perform tasks), sociological (how we relate to  others), and ideological (what we believe)  Aspects of culture – complexities of human lifestyles, like social arrangements, use of land and  resources, language, spiritual, and political beliefs  Region – form of classification and basic building block of geographic analysis o Form of common characteristics like geographic proximity (North America), a  dominant crop (the Corn Belt), the economic base (the Manufacturing Belt), a common  history (Dixie), or common set of trading partners (European Union)  Conceptualizing – method for geographers to impose order on messy complexities of real world  Eras – time organized into blocks (Middle Ages, Great Depression, etc.)  Three types of regions – formal, functional, and perceptual  Formal region – has a common human characteristic like language, religion, or level of economic development or common physical attribute like climate, landform, or vegetation  Functional region – held together by a common set of linkages or spatial interactions o Criteria – transportation flows, information exchanges, and movements of people  A region from which people travel to a grocery store is a function region, and so is the region to  which you are going to   Megalopolis – describes the coalescence of metropolitan areas into a continuous network of  urban development  o A formal region in the sense that it represents a dense concentration of human activity  and the dominance of urban over rural land uses o A functional region because it is linked by extensive movements of people, goods, and  information  Perceptual region – based on people’s feelings or beliefs about areas and are subjective rather  than objective in nature  Vernacular regions – a type of perceptual region, identified by local residents, not as outsiders  perceive them o Vernacular – traits of the common folk (speech, architecture, dress, etc.)  Culture traits ­ technological (tools, architecture, farming methods, clothing, or eating utensils),  sociological (forms of greetings, family relationships, work relationships), or ideological  (religion, symbols, grave markers)  Key component of culture region – inhabitants are aware to some degree of a common heritage  and differences from other territorial groups  Geographers look for regional identity when studying vernacular regions o Vernacular regions stem from human emotions and feelings about place  Milieu – unique geographic setting  Genres de vie – “ways of life”, an integration of environmental, spiritual, and cultural practices  in a region  Cultural landscape – people modify their environment to their specific needs, technologies, and  lifestyles  Value system – affects the way people perceive and use the natural environment and the way the  cultural landscape looks  Culture evident in natural landscape, names of places, types of architecture, designs of cities, and symbols like monuments, flags, slogans, or religious icons and symbolic meaning associated  with artifacts (landscaping, house types, commercial signs, etc.)  Symbols – express people’s identity (soccer mom, union worker, feminist, etc.), promote  ideology (western image of cowboy as expression of individualism)  Often no central, unifying “belief” or single “identity” in any given place but a multiplicity of  belief systems and group allegiances  Rarely see expressions of disenfranchised groups (gay couples walking hand in hand, Rastafarian communal living, etc.)  Symbols used to construct regional identity but for majority and don’t represent minorities or  disenfranchised groups  Can’t determine where a culture region starts and ends o Don’t think one fixed boundary but gradations between them  Donald Meinig – first to conceptualized gradations when studying the Mormon culture region in  western US o Can now determine three terms: o Core – “most pure” area that possesses all of the culture traits used to define the region, heart and soul of culture region, vital center, and focus of circulation o Domain – area where a particular culture is dominant but less intense o Sphere – zone of outer influence where people with the culture traits in question can  even be a minority within another culture region   One culture’s core can lie within another culture’s sphere  Transitions between core, domain, and sphere can be gradual or abrupt o Barriers to movement have historically created abrupt transitions   Syncretism occurs in many aspects of culture


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