Notes Feb 7 - Geography of The Pacific Rim Notes February 7...

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Geography of The Pacific Rim Notes February 7, 2006 Taoism : Comes from China The 2 Most important feature of Chinese topography: unbelievable amounts of people, the relatively small physical land area the Chinese actually occupy. China has only HALF of the useable land that the U.S. does, and in that space five to six times as many people dwell. They became heavily populated at a very early age. (This is a bit odd.) Their biggest problems have to do with dealing with their HUGE population. (1.3 billion people and actually an underestimate, possibly an additional hundred million) The huge population is a side effect of being so advanced (at one point). Small population reflects a struggling country. The weather is often unpredictable. Problem of where to get enough water. This implies that Chinese agriculture has evolved in a distinctly Chinese way: The control of water is very important because a lot of China is desert. And they are prone to flooding. Impact on history: Huge irrigation projects had to be done from the very beginning. Why is this important? Because when one has to do a huge irrigation project like this it takes lots of organization and this implies that they needed a well organized, complex, government that could handle this issue. Regionalism : Lots of people is good, have a big army and whatnot, but they can be easily divided. Much of China is split, there are tons of different dialects. (In China its not like U.S. with different accents, some of the dialects are completely different languages, like German and English). Remember there are no Chinese, this has been created by the West. So they tried to create unity, create a common tradition that they could all accept as their own. The peasants are obsessed with nature (flooding, droughts, survival is hard so they always have to pay attention to nature), because it kills them. In US and Europe getting protein and water is easily, always near sources of water and food. Chinese do not have this luxury, there is always a shortage. 90% of the average peasant diet comes from grain, sometimes they might get some protein from scraps or whatever. There is a precarious balance between life and death in China. A slight change in the weather means the difference between life and death.
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This note was uploaded on 04/30/2008 for the course SOC SCI 119 taught by Professor Bach during the Winter '06 term at UC Irvine.

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Notes Feb 7 - Geography of The Pacific Rim Notes February 7...

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