Chapter 3 Notes Mexico and Central America
Chapter 3 Notes Mexico and Central America GEOG 32102-02
Northwest Missouri State University
Popular in People and Cultures of the World
Popular in Geography
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Date Created: 10/06/16
09.19.16 CHAPTER 3 MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA CLIMATE AND LAND USE I. Elevation offers ability to reside in tropics without tropical heat. II. Tierra Caliente (Hot Lands) a. Lowland areas along the coastline. i. Sugarcane ii. Cacao iii. Bananas iv. Citrus III. Tierra Templada (Temperate Lands) a. Elevations of 3,000 to 6,000 feet. i. Mixed agriculture. ii. Urban development. 1. Guadalajara, Mexico 2. Guatemala City 3. San Jose, Coast Rica IV. Tierra Fria (Cold Lands) a. Elevations over 6,000 feet. i. Hardy agriculture. 1. Potatoes and Barley. ii. Livestock. 1. Sheep, Llama. iii. Mining activities. 1. Tin and copper. MAYAN CIVILIZATION I. Great agriculturalist specializing in corn, squash, and beans. a. Civilization decline began around 900 CE. b. Developed sophisticated: i. Calendar ii. Language iii. Observations iv. Religious shrines SPANISH CONQUEST I. Central American lands captured for Spanish Empire. a. Aztecs and other indigenous groups overwhelmed with guns, germs, and steel. PANAMA I. With help from USA, Panama gained independence from Colombia in 1904. a. Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine. i. US had the right to supervise the internal affairs of Latin American countries to ensure US national security. II. Panama Canal a. Water-route through the American continent. i. Cuts 7,800 miles and 20 days of travel around southern tip of Chile. b. Has been improved recently to allow larger freighters to use the canal. i. 50 miles across Isthmus of Panama. ii. 14,000 ships per year. iii. Had been part of US property until 1999. III. Panama City a. Great amount of international investment in real estate and business interest in Panama. i. Donald Trump Tower ii. Economic Growth Rates NICARAGUA I. Sandinistas overthrew Somoza dynasty 1979. a. Instituted a policy of mass literacy, devoted significant resources to health care, and promoted gender equality. b. A militia, the Contras formed in 1981 to overthrow the Sandinista government funded and trained by the US CIA. II. President Reagan believed the Sandinistas spreading communism in Latin America. a. Daniel Ortega elected leader. i. Contra military coup failed. US INTERVENTION I. US decided to go after Noriega. a. Military leader of Panama. i. In the 1989 invasion of Panama by the United States Noriega was removed from power, captured, detained as a prisoner of war, and flown to the United States for trial. ii. Noriega was tried and convicted on eight counts of drug trafficking, racketeering, and money laundering in 1992. EL SALVADOR I. Civil war between government forces and left-wing socialist organizations 1979- 1992. a. Death squads. b. Child soldiers. c. People disappeared. d. Anyone linked to guerrilla movement. TOURISM I. Tourism is the second largest economic activity in Latin America. a. Many different types of vacation experiences. i. Cruises in Caribbean ii. Mexican Riviera resorts iii. Rainforest adventures COSTA RICA I. Tended to focus upon eco-tourism. a. Zip lines in rainforest b. Whitewater rafting 2 c. Bird watching d. Beach resorts MEXICO I. Strong government influence in Mexico City. II. Less influence outside Mexico City. a. Organized crime and narcotrafficantes. i. Drug dealers run many cities. 1. Provide employment, protection, and revenue. III. Drug cartels a. Many cities under control by one cartel. i. Juarez is sought after turf and many cartels vying for control of trade through border town. b. Mexican cartels control nearly all the wholesale market and handle 70% of all illicit drugs distributed in the US. i. Distribution of violence in Mexico related to control of drug smuggling operations. IV. Many from Central America travel through Mexico for entry into USA. a. Piedras Negras V. Very destitute population living without: a. Heating and cooling. b. Plumbing. c. Safe electricity. i. Neighborhoods called colonias. VI. US/Mexico Border a. Long border subdividing developing world from the developed world. i. Source of political debate. ii. Fences of different kinds. b. War on drug and human smuggling fought by Border Patrol agents. i. Very visible demarcation of power. THE CARIBBEAN AND THE ANTILLES A GREAT ARCHIPELAGO I. Region comprised of about 7,000 islands stretching in a lengthy arc. ETYMOLOGY I. The region’s name stems from the carb people who inhabited the islands at the time of European conquest. COLONIZATION I. This region was a site of significant colonization. a. Large sugar plantations. b. African slaves imported to work in the fields. THE ENVIRONMENT I. Susceptible to various natural hazards. a. Hurricanes 3 b. Earthquakes c. Volcanoes II. Hurricanes and cyclonic formation a. Inter-tropical convergence zone (ITCZ) i. Where different trade winds collide. 1. Air piles up near the surface due to the converging winds forcing the warm, humid air over the tropical oceans to rise. 2. As the air rises, it cools and water vapor condenses into clouds and rain. b. With little wind shear and great amounts of warm water and unstable air, a storm may grow into a powerful hurricane. c. Measured by Saffir-Simpson scale. III. Earthquakes a. Plate movement and tectonic activity along a fault line or zone. b. Hazards i. A natural hazard will likely produce greater damage and injury in less developed areas. 1. In 2010 a moderate earthquake occurred in Haiti. c. 2010 Haiti Earthquake i. Significant damage and loss of life for a number of reasons. 1. Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the Western hemisphere. 2. The quake was centered in the most populated city. 3. On the periphery of the city were numerous squatter settlements. 4. Long history of corrupt governments and poor planning. IV. Deforestation a. The massive forests of the Caribbean have largely been clear cut for the expansion of the cash crop production. i. Sugar cane fields. ii. Wood for fuel and refine sugar. POPULATION AND SETTLEMENT I. 87% of the region’s population is concentrated on the four islands known as the Greater Antilles. a. Hispaniola (Haiti and DR) b. Puerto Rico c. Jamaica d. Cuba II. Most of the region’s inhabitants live in urbanized areas in very densely settled communities. a. Shantytowns and squatter settlements i. Utilities pirated and very unsafe conditions. III. Due to the history of socialism in Cuba, most of Cuba’s housing is government owned and bland looking. a. Residential homogeneity. GEOPOLITICS I. The USSR wanted to station nuclear missiles in Cuba during Cold War. a. USA tried many times to overthrow Fidel Castro. b. No diplomatic relations from 1960 to 2015. II. Neocolonialism 4 a. Economic and political strategies that powerful states use to extend their control over other, weaker states. b. Some state that the USA has a neocolonial relationship with Latin America. c. Examples i. US invades Grenada in 1983 because they were concerned that Grenada would become a communist country. ii. US places major sanctions and blockades on goods coming or leaving Cuba. MODERN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT I. Sugar cane and rum. II. Tourism a. Cruises and resorts. III. Tax Haven a. Countries where taxes on foreign-sourced income or capital gains are low or non-existent. CONCLUSIONS I. Caribbean significantly affected by colonial rule re-shaping the physical and cultural landscape. II. Large populations centers on larger islands. a. Much more isolation on smaller islands. III. Dependency on USA and other economic powers in the region. SOUTH AMERICA POPULAR LANGUAGES SPANISH AND PORTUGUESE I. Treaty of Tordesillas a. Spain takes west, Portugal takes east. i. Brazil II. Portuguese part of America III. Sugar plantations to export. IV. Gold and silver mining. a. Slave labor. BRAZIL I. Brazil gained independence from Portugal in 1822. a. Brazil has had lots of territorial expansion further to the amazon. b. Largest country in area and population in Latin America. i. 200 million people, open immigration policy, lots of minority. II. 1964 – 1985 brazil run by military dictatorship. a. Attempted to be like US and have petroleum based economy. b. Brazil had large national debt. III. 1985, free elections as new government take-over. a. Invest in transportation (interstates) b. Invest in agriculture and technology IV. Largest exporter of: a. Cane sugar, beef, chicken, coffee, tobacco. b. Most Brazilians themselves count even afford these. 5 V. Huge gap from wealthy and poor. a. Favelas, shantytowns. b. 21% population lives in destitute poverty. c. 81% urban cities CARNIVAL IN BRAZIL I. Most famous holiday, economy shuts down. II. Intense festivities. a. Rio drew 4.9 million people. ARGENTINA I. Independence from Spain in 1816. a. Juan and Eva Peron leadership after WWII. i. Communists. ii. Nationalized industry. iii. Woman’s Suffrage iv. Forced to leave in 1955 b. After they left, government was a mess, who’s in control? i. Military ii. Socialist movement iii. Lots of kidnapping (no rules because no government) c. Modern Argentina part of G-20 (20 largest economic powers) i. Buenos Aires CHILE I. Elongated state a. Odd culture II. North is desert III. People are central Chile, central is urban. IV. South cold and damp COLUMBIA I. Ethnically diverse, drug dealers II. Spanish migrants III. Africans originally brought as slaves IV. Recent immigrants from Europe and middle east V. High elevation even though near equator VI. Similar government as USA (3 branches) VII.Large mining a. Urban population in large cities MONROE DOCTRINE I. Efforts by European nations to colonize land and interfere with states in North and South America would be viewed as aggression requiring US intervention II. Drug wars in Columbia VENEZUELA 6 I. Large scale resentment of US toward Latin America and other oil production countries a. Oil represents 90% of Venezuela. i. Keep western business out. b. State owned oil company c. Socialist government control i. Hugo Chavez death was a nystery. ii. Economy downhill after. II. Country doesn’t have enough food CONCLUSIONS I. Minerals and oil large role in economy in south America II. Political instability, most have been ironed out. III. Great potential though 7
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