However, there will be physical feature questions that focus on the origins of or processes that
certain physical features (e.g, how was the English Channel formed?), about the
of certain kinds of features (e.g., the fertility of loess soils), and about the general
of the four physical feature regions (Northwest Highlands, North European Plain,
Hercynian Uplands, and the Alpine and Mediterranean South) outlined in lecture and in your
text, as well as the surrounding seas (i.e., in what ways would you differentiate between them?)
and the special case of Iceland.
1. Introductory material
Regional concepts (instituted, naively perceived, denoted);
Instituted regions: created by authorities within some organization.
They were created so the
organization can more easily administer whatever activity it is engaged in.
These regions are
recognized as existing entities and have boundaries that are clearly demarcated and usually
agreed on by everyone.
Systems of instituted regions are often hierarchical, with the highest
level being the independent state, second level being the constituent state, then county, then
Closest European example: the EU.
Naively perceived regions: created informally, come into existence through popular recognition
and without official sanction.
If internally perceived they represent a community and serve as an
These were more common prior to development of modern transportation.
more common in Europe than North America.
Ex: During the Middle Ages Europeans identified
more with the parish in which they lived than with the territory of their secular lord.
Denoted regions: found in geographic and other academic writings
created by scholars and
They are created to reduce the complexity of the real world so that it can better
be understood. Two kinds: Uniform regions and Nodal regions.
Uniform regions are
Nodal regions are functional and tied to the same central place by the
movement of people, ideas, and things.
Ex: Soviet Union break up.
Strasbourg (identities of);
the European Union (extent of, role as a regional force);
the “personality of Europe” (e.g. Enlightenment philosophy, Nationalism and Romanticism,
Commercialism and Industrialism);
Middle Eastern heritage – Basic fabric of European civilization has been borrowed from the
Anatolia, Mesopotamia, the Levant, and Egypt gave rise to Western Civilization
with their innovations.
Middle East innovations: domestication of plants and animals, shifting
form of cultivation, metallurgy, discovery of bronze, the invention of the wheel and sail,
extraction of large amounts of iron ore, and domestication of the horse.
As agriculture became
more efficient, fewer workers were needed in it.
Occupations became more specialized and
division of labor increased which led to large cities.
Governments, credit systems, commerce,
trade, centers of states, etc. improved.
Invention of writing led to the creation of poetry, drama,
and history, to the development of schools, creation of the alphabet.