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Geography Week 6

by: Annah Shrader

Geography Week 6 His 1030

Annah Shrader
GPA 3.705

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About this Document

These notes are on Middle America!
World civilizations III
Amy huesman
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Annah Shrader on Sunday October 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to His 1030 at University of Tennessee - Chattanooga taught by Amy huesman in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 2 views. For similar materials see World civilizations III in History at University of Tennessee - Chattanooga.


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Date Created: 10/09/16
Geography Week 6 Middle America Middle America is a fragmented realm and is made up of two parts:  Mainland: Mexico, Guatemala, Panama, El Salvador, Honduras, Costa Rica, Belize, and Nicaragua. This forms the land bridge between Mexico and South America.  Caribbean Rimland: Over 7000 islands. Major islands are Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico. Physiography:  Rugged and mountainous which leads to 5 zones of altitudinal zonation. The temperature decreases and average of 2 degrees every 1000 feet on average. o The first zone begins at the lowest point. It is called the tierra caliente and it begins at sea level and goes up to 2500 feet. It is known as the hot land where those who work get it done early in the day so that they do not have to work in the sun. Tropical agriculture such as bananas, sugarcane, and rice are grown. o Above this zone is the tierra templada where most people live. It is where cities are located. The land is from 2500ft to 6000ft. Agriculture consists of coffee, corn, vegetables and wheat. The weather is cooler and more pleasing. o Above this is the tierra fria from 6000 to 12,000 feet high. It is cold here and agriculture consists root foods like potatoes. The tree line stops in this zone. o Above it is the tierra helada where livestock grazing is the only form of agriculture that can be supported. It goes from 12,000 to 15,000 feet above sea level. o Above this is the tierra nevada where there is permanent snow and ice on the peaks of the Andes mountains. Amerindian Groups: rd th  Mayans: The height of their dominance was between the 3 and 10 centuries AD. There were around 2-3 million of them. Their language is still used in current day in small pockets of societies. There system was one where their government and their religion ran together into the same idea. Their cities were ceremonial centers. They were engaged in trade in the surrounding areas. They grew coffee and corn. o The Mayans disproved the term environmental determinism. This was a theory that advanced cultures only arose in temperate climates. The Mayans arose in the lowlands.  Toltec: They replaced the Mayans and were replaced in the 13 centuryth AD. They did not last long. th  Aztecs: Replaced the Toltec in the 13 century AD. They expanded their rule in the 14 century and conquered much land. Their center was located in modern day Mexico City. Human sacrifice was a part of their religious practices. The built pyramids as alters. They also grew corn and coffee. They had advanced systems of irrigation and agricultural skills. They were a rich kingdom. Spain defeated them in the 16 century. Spain:  1519 Hernando Cortez landed in Mexico. He invaded the land and was initially received as a god because they brought horses, gun powder, and iron, but that did not last long.  They were going to take the Amerindians as slaves, but the diseases they brought over ended up wiping most of them out anyways.  The Spanish moved the Amerindians into colonial Spanish towns. The Plaza was the center where the government building and the church was located. The periphery was the residential area and stores. These towns allowed for the Spaniards to educate the Amerindians in language and religion, as well as collect taxes. Change Brought by Spain:  Amerindian cities ceased being religious centers and became urban economic centers.  They introduced the language of Spanish.  They introduced the religion of Roman Catholicism.  They introduced diseases from the domestic animals. The Europeans had built up immunity but the natives had never been exposed to domestic animals. Entire islands of natives were wiped out.  They introduced cattle, horses and sheep.  They introduced wheat. Middle American Independence 1810-1821:  Mainland: Mexico to Panama. The people are either Spanish, Amerindian, or Mestizo (a mix of Spanish and native). Mexico is the largest country in the mainland. Haciendas are located here. They are land where things are grown or livestock can graze. The haciendas are much more relaxed and are not as productive as plantations.  Rimland: Caribbean coastal strip of the mainland to the island chains in the Caribbean Sea. Cuba is the largest island here. The dominant cultures here are Northwestern Europe and Africans, but the overall cultural makeup is much more diverse than mainland Middle America. Plantations are the dominant land cultivation. They are much more efficient and profitable than haciendas. Plantations are pushed to their limits to create maximum productivity. They are also focused on a single crop. 3 Regions:  The United States of Mexico: The largest region in both population and terrain. Over 50% of the population are mestizos. 30% are true Amerindian and around 15% are pure Spanish. The Europeans minority runs the majority of Mexico. There is natural gas and oil in the region, which might seem good for the economy at first, but the Mexicans borrowed too much and are now too far in debt to make any profit. Mexico is rapidly urbanizing. o There was a revolution in 1910. It was due to the indigenous people working as indentured servants on the haciendas. They wanted a reform of the land tenure system. This broke up the haciendas and returned the land to the peasants.  Central America Republics: There are 7 countries here. The climate is tropical with altitudinal zonations. They grow coffee, bananas, and pineapples. o Guatemala: 15 million people. It is the center of where the Mayans lived and is an unstable country. o Belize: 300,000 population. It is former British Honduras. They have a major tourist industry and a lot of immigration from Mexico. o El Salvador: The smallest country. Densely populated and not stable. o Honduras: One of the poorest in the region. It is the least developed. o Nicaragua: Also one of the poorest countries. Lots of civil wars going on within. People are moving to Costa Rica. o Costa Rica: Stable country and stable economy. They abolished the army in the 1950s. Beautiful, and high on tourism. o Panama: It was born when the canal was built in 1914. This area of land was originally part of Colombia. The canal allowed for boats to pass through the land bridge instead of parking the boat and picking up a new boat on the other side of the land.  Caribbean Basin: Greater Antilles and Lesser Antilles. High rates of poverty. The agriculture is limited to sugar because of poor soils. Dense populations. Colonial melting pot. Tourism is the main source of income which has created an irritant industry due to locals carrying resentment for the well to-do tourists invading their homes. The land is plagued with earthquakes, volcanos, and hurricanes. o Greater Antilles: Cuba, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Haiti and the Dominican Republic. The Dominican and Haiti make up one island called Hispaniola. o Lesser Antilles: The thousands of other islands from the Bahamas down to the north coast of Venezuela.


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