ch 5 FINAL - CHAPTER FIVE Russia and the Newly Independent...

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Unformatted text preview: CHAPTER FIVE Russia and the Newly Independent States Russia and the Newly Independent States Figure 5.1 I. THE GEOGRAPHIC SETTING Constituted by 12 former republics of the USSR Russia contains more than 30 ethnic internal republics Diversity hidden by single country Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia already discussed A. Physical Patterns Undulating landforms from west to east To south, no regular physical barriers North European Plain Ural Mountains West Siberian Plain Central Siberian Plateau Pacific Mountains Caucasus, steppes, mountains of East Asia A. Physical Patterns Landforms North European Plain: western subregion European Russia; most densely populated Volga River important for transportation Ural Mountains: border between Europe and Asia West Siberian Plain: largest plain in the world Oil reserves, permafrost Relatively low, not a barrier to movement A. Physical Patterns Landforms Central Siberian Plateau Pacific Mountain Zone activity Permafrost at varying depths Moderated by ocean, warmed by volcanic These two regions, together, size of USA Steppes and mountains to the south; area of cultural interpenetration Pacific Plate sinking under Eurasian Plate Kamchatka Figure 5.4 A. Physical Patterns Climate and Vegetation Harsh continental climate Protected from moderating oceanic winds by mountains to the south Agriculture focused in west, where precipitation is maximized Best soils are found in southwest Taiga found in northern Siberian vastness Northern coniferous forest Climate Zones Figure 5.6 Historic trend has been centralization B. Human Patterns Over Time New trend: decentralization Core area: European Russia, ethnic homeland for Russians Other ethnic groups conquered by Russians Later, Russian Empire became USSR Breakup of USSR The Rise of the Russian Empire B. Human Patterns Over Time Occupied most of Eastern Europe Slavs: farmers from Poland, Ukraine, Belarus Controlled Volga River trade route Kiev and Moscow: key urban areas; influenced Conquered by Mongols by Byzantine traders (Cyrillic, Orthodoxy) Moscow's elites became tax collectors; eventually rebelled and started expanding their own empire Independence Square, Kiev Figure 5.9 The Rise of the Russian Empire B. Human Patterns Over Time Similar to other European colonizers: resources appropriated, private property upheld over communal property Different from other European colonizers: large numbers of Russians migrated in, surpassing indigenous populations Russian czar: lived in splendor Central Asia: provider of cotton Serfdom remained in place until mid1800s Russian Imperial Expansion Figure 5.11 The Communist Revolution and its B. Human Patterns Over Time Aftermath During WWI, czar overthrown, Bolsheviks take power Communism: criticizes capitalism for centralization Centrally planned economy instituted by Stalin Government owned all land and means of of production in a wealthy minority production Government directs all economic activity Significant successes and failures World War II and the Cold War 23 million casualties B. Human Patterns Over Time Almost singlehandedly won WWII Created buffer of allied Communist countries Cold War confrontation over ideology Arms race, promotion of communism overseas Dragged down by war in Afghanistan Steady drift away from hardline communism The Cold War in 1980 Figure 5.12 B. Human Patterns Over Time The PostSoviet Years Gorbachev: glasnost, perestroika Russia: major inheritor of USSR's mantle 11 other new republics in this region Rollback of democratic reforms in Russia? Failed to solve problems, stoked nationalism Haphazard transition to free market economies C. Population Patterns European Russia: densest population in the region Siberian settlement follows the Trans Wedge from Odessa north to St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk (best farmland) Siberian Railway Concentrated in a few cities Population Distribution Figure 5.13 Recent Population Changes Post1991, rapidly deteriorating C. Population Patterns USSR: Relatively high standard of living and wellbeing Decline in life expectancy (esp. men) social disruption Alcoholism Nutritional deficiencies Physical and mental stress from lost jobs and Women choosing not to have children Population Pyramids Figure 5.15 II. CURRENT GEOGRAPHIC ISSUES Soviet experiment: to reform quickly and totally a society and its institutions Now, a new experiment: shifting to democracy and a free market economy As in Bolshevik Revolution, great uncertainty as to outcomes The Former Command Economy A. Economic and Political Issues Successfully eradicated abject poverty, basic needs met Still, because of inefficiencies, scarcities and gluts No competition, therefore inefficient production methods Products of poor quality and overpriced Lack of technological innovation outside of military, space exploration Soviet Regional Development A. Economic and Political Issues Central government in charge of locating industry Spread throughout vast territory to boost Schemes Cost of transport made industry inefficient Many industries incapable of being sustained after breakup of USSR standards of living in distant areas Also, protected from enemy attack Industrial Regions and Land Transportation Figure 5.20 Transport Issues A. Economic and Political Issues However, Soviet rivers generally run northsouth Few oceanic ports Water transport: cheapest Land transport: best option Hindered by permafrost, swampy forests, complex Therefore, USSR (2.5x size of USA) has 1/6 the roads Importance of TransSiberian Railway, air transport (expensive) upland landscapes, limited car ownership Reform in the PostSoviet Era Intended to maximize efficiency A. Economic and Political Issues Privatization: governmentowned industries sold to private companies or individuals Price controls: Initial scarcity during privatization led to massive profits Squeezed those who might become entrepreneurs Suffering until supply able to meet demand Importance of supply and demand for prices Oligarchs: early profiteers, now powerful Foreign Direct Investment A. Economic and Political Issues Afraid of overdependence on oil and natural gas Foreign investors bringing in money The Growing Informal Economy Extension of old communistera black market So large now it skews economic statistics Taxfree, does not benefit entire country Undermines government authority A. Economic and Political Issues High energy prices end debt crisis New Trading Partners Russia owed 90% of GDP in 1998 Defaulted in 2000, rescheduling contingent on economic reforms By 2008, debt expected to be 12% of GDP Shift away from intraregional trade to EU, other Asian countries (India, China) Oil and Natural Gas Resource Areas and Pipelines A. Economic and Political Issues Obstacles to International Trade Each country must now establish its own trade agreements Must improve products for international market Lack of marketing expertise Lack of transportation infrastructure What exists is focused on getting things to/from Russia Supplying Oil and Gas to the World A. Economic and Political Issues Gazprom: 10th largest oil and gas company in the Russia's exports: 1st in world for natural gas; 2nd in world for oil world Oil: over half of Russia's tax receipts Greater Integration with Europe and USA Russia: joining WTO, G8 EU: over 50% of Russia's foreign trade Russia provides 20% of Europe's natural gas Political Reforms in the PostSoviet Era A. Economic and Political Issues Russia, Belarus, Central Asia: legislatures are Democracy slower to develop Russia: older people likely to vote for socialists, authoritarians; younger people more reformist, less likely to vote Lack of free press in Russia rubber stamps Power of oligarchs over politicians Government oppression; murders of journalists Silenced Critics in Russia Figure 5.23 The Military in the PostSoviet Era A. Economic and Political Issues The Political Status of Women Cutbacks have created reservoir of discontent Smuggling of nuclear warheads? In USSR, women officially equal but had little power in government Women still fare poorly in elections Today, large role in NGO work within country A. Economic and Political Issues Russia's Internal Republics Ethnic areas incorporated within Federation 30 republics, 10 autonomous regions 25% of Russia's land area Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, animist, etc. Separatists in Tatarstan and Chechnya warfare since 1991 Tatarstan: less insistent, responsive to overtures Chechnya: committed to independence, bloody B. Sociocultural Issues End of Soviet Union unexpected, sudden Increase in: Decrease in: Selfexpression and individual initiative Political participation Cultural and religious revival Employment Housing, food, and health care Civil order Cultural Dominance of Russia B. Sociocultural Issues Russian affinity for European Slavic republics (Ukraine, Belarus, Baltic States) Caucasus and Central Asia viewed as different 40 legal languages, but Russian "official" Suppression of local custom internal republics, to acculturate minorities Russians migrated to these regions, as well as Use of Cyrillic alphabet regardless of language Russian Population as a % of Total Population Figure 5.26 B. Sociocultural Issues Cultural Revival in the PostSoviet Era Most former Soviet republics are reasserting their own culture Increase in religious activity United States missionaries Belarus notable exception Original orthodoxy, also evangelicalism from Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow B. Sociocultural Issues Unemployment and Loss of Safety Net By 2006, improved By mid1990s, 60% of Russian labor not being paid in full and on time Underemployment: Working with too few hours to survive; having a job you are overtrained for Loss of status association with unemployment particularly difficult for men Death by alcohol poisoning increased by 25% in 1990s Gender and Opportunity in FreeMarket B. Sociocultural Issues Russia By the 1970s, 90% of women worked outside the home (and inside Double Day) Now, women better educated than men Still, lack of supervisory jobs; lower pay Open discrimination in job ads Pressure to provide for their children and parents B. Sociocultural Issues Corruption and Social Instability Gangsters took over vast swathes of the postindependence economy Bribery common, required to get things done Legal systems contradictory, lead to attitude of noncompliance with government Impatience with the Present, Nostalgia B. Sociocultural Issues for the Past Modern cities surrounded by rural stagnation In rural areas, great nostalgia for Soviet past Lack of willingness to see painful reforms Many embrace more authoritarian Putin in hopes he will restore greatness of Russia through C. Environmental Issues Capitalism and communism share disregard for environment Soviet Union disregarded environment in quest for industrial development Today, lack of desire, money to deal with environmental damage Lack of unitary government to deal with fallout from USSR's environmental policies "Everything rots, everything dies." Figure 5.29 Resource Extraction and Environmental C. Environmental Issues Degradation Region has tremendous natural resources Lack of environmental monitoring Siberia too large Demand growing with rise of international prices Some signs of reprieve, but not many Lake Baikal pipeline C. Environmental Issues Urban and Industrial Pollution Urban sewer systems rare Fewer purify sewage Workers' quarters near industrial sites Nonpoint sources of pollution Diffuse dangers, such as auto exhaust C. Environmental Issues Nuclear Pollution birth defects Worst nuclear pollution in the world 500 nuclear explosions in Kazakhstan, led to Chernobyl: 1986 explosion of a nuclear reactor 5,000 people died, 30,000 disabled, and Soviet military bases east of the Urals Soil has 20x the radiation of Chernobyl 100,000 evacuated Human Impacts in Russia and the Newly Independent States Figure 5.30 C. Environmental Issues Irrigation and the Aral Sea Once 4th largest lake in the world Disappearing because of irrigation projects By 2001, 25% original size By 1980s, no new water entering the sea Fish died; port cities far from water More illness, shorter growing season Huge environmental impact Kazakh efforts to refill the sea having some success The Decline of the Aral Sea Figure 5.31 Living standards beginning to improve in D. Measures of Human Well Being most of the region Increasing inequality within, and between, countries HDI falling for virtually every country in the region GEM data incomplete No equality of women with men Human Wellbeing Rankings Table 5.2 III. SUBREGIONS OF RUSSIA & INDEPENDENT STATES A. European Russia Historical core of Russia Most of the industry 1/5 of Russia's territory, but: The best agricultural land 70% of Russia's population Very expensive Moscow: 10.4 million people St. Petersburg: 5 million people 2nd largest city in Russia Most modernized economy of Russia St. Petersburg, Russia Figure 5.34 B. Siberian Russia Huge territory, only 33 million people Forests and wetlands, now exploited for resources Major cities in south Novosibirsk: main industrial and commercial center New and Old in Siberian Russia Figure 5.36 C. Russian Far East Mountain plateaus and coastline Most live along TransSiberian Railroad and 90% of land is permafrost on coast Timber and mineral extraction Less exploited because of distance to Europe Now, opportunities with resourcehungry China Vostochny Port Figure 5.38 D. Belarus Flat, glaciated landscape Thoroughly Russified during Soviet era Economy still statecontrolled Ruled by dictator Alexander Lukashenko Pushes for reunion with Russia Putin rejects; Belarus would be an economic drag Government Repression in Belarus Figure 5.40 E. Moldova and Ukraine Unique identities (not Russified) Warmer climate, good farmland Ukraine: large agricultural country Moldova: small agricultural country, pursuing niche in wine and nuts Headed toward EU cooperation, if not membership in near future Pipeline of illegal migration to Europe F. Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan Caucasus Mountains: stretch from Black to Caspian Seas religious More than 50 ethnic groups, many Warm temperature, abundant moisture Conflict from ethnic groups divided by state boundaries or lumped together Foreign instigations Oil resources in Caspian Sea Language in Caucasia Figure 5.41 G. Central Asian Republics Historically, the Silk Road Returning ethnic and Muslim identities Access to oil and natural gas reserves Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and To enrich locals for first time since colonization Turkmenistan Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan Largely plains, cotton production Mountainous, poor Kazakh Nomads Figure 5.46 G. Central Asian Republics With USSR weak from Afghan War, republics gained independence easily Rocky transition Numerous outsiders want Central Asian Decline in standards of living, oppression of Muslims, authoritarian governments Sovietled migrations of ethnic groups created a patchwork of ethnicity, conflict oil ...
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This note was uploaded on 02/14/2011 for the course GEOG 101 taught by Professor Sheers during the Spring '08 term at George Mason.

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