Midterm Study Guide
Geography 5 – People and Earth’s Ecosystems
What is Geography?
Natural and Social Science
Physical- geomorphology, hydrology, topography, climatology, ecology, soils
Human/Cultural- demographics, political/economic, class/race/gender, social
Space vs. Place
Place has more of a human aspect- place = some sort of space + meaning
Place-making- how do people make places/give meaning to spaces? Eg. classrooms,
How places get made, how we make places from nature
Must know about different fields even when you’re studying just one subject- eg. to study
Colorado River, must have some knowledge about Hydrology, Engineering, Spanish, Poli-
Sci, Law, Soil Sciences, Int’l Relations etc.
Don’t take anything for granted- take everything apart, down to the basics; truth is socially
constructed- made by humans- so we can take things apart, find our own truth in them
, used to destabilize/undercut truth claims
On surface, text/argument seems coherent, consistent, unequivocal, about something real – but instead,
every written work inherently filled with contradiction, holds no finality in meaning- any time you
create a “center” of truth, you inherently create periphery, marginalization which ultimately => untruth
The study of how we create knowledge/come to know things
Views of Nature
(aka Shallow Ecology/Conservation Perspective)
Conservation, sustainable use of resources big theme; uses terms like: manage, control, conserve,
dominate nature… a dominant strain in our society today fr many diff groups
Technocratic- seeks managerial, technical solutions to env’t probs w/in existing socio-economic
Anthropocentric- sees human values as source of all values, sees use of nature for human ends; no
real inherent interest in nature except in relation to/purpose for us => idea that harmony can exist
Too technocratic- treats nature as resource to be used; can technology really tell us how nature is?
Intellectually limited? Doesn’t address deeper structural probs that underlie envt’l issues
What about social consequences of growth- is it all good?
(aka Deep Ecology/Deep Greens Perspective)
Nature has inherent rights to existence that are just as, if not more, impt than humans
Nature is a model for human society
Uses terms like save, get back to, live in harmony w/nature; espouses shedding all aspects of
modernity, going back to living w/nature etc.
Espouses getting back to nature which involves dismantling of political/economic structures;