Wednesday, 31 August 2017

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Geography as the study of environment

Geography is the study of the physical environment,in relation to the human world.The concepts of geography,are seen to have rooted in the thinking of the philosophers and geographers in different forms.Geography as the study of environment are discussed below.Geography is a link subject
between physical and social sciences. It includes both nature and man, on their relationship.

Geography as the study of environment


(a) Environmentalism
It is one of the important philosophies which persisted up to the second world war. The determinists, consider man as a passive agent on which physical factors are acting and determining his attitude and process of decision making. During the medieval period, this concept dominated the writings of the Arab geographers, who divided the world into seven terrestrial zones. Al-Masudi, Al-Idrisi were some of them. George Tathan and Immanuel Kant also explained the differences between people with reference to the land they lived in. Carl Ritter and Alexander Von Humboldt also differentiated the mode of life of the inhabitance of mountains and plains. Friedrich Ratzel, who was the founder of New Determinism supplemented classical geography with reference to Social Darwinism. According to him, similar locations lead similar mode of life of the people. Ellen Churchill Semple, Ellsworth Huntington, Herbertson were the other followers of this concept.

(b) Possibilsm -This concept was explained by Lucian Febvre as the stage of development of different so cities and their history. The possibilists, consider nature as a passive agent and has the influence of man in it in various ways. The work of man is the starting point of this concept. This concept was developed by Vidal-de-la-blache. In his studies, he minimized the influence of environment on the activities of man.
He tried to explain that the difference between groups of similar environment are due to the variations in attitudes, values and habits of the people. This concept was also popular in and outside France, where the supporters were Jean Brunhes and Carl Sover.

(c) Neo-determinism - This concept was put forwarded by Griffith Taylor. He believed that the best economic program for a country to follow has in large part been determines by nature. The phrase, 'Stop and Go Determinism' expresses this concept. According to this phrase, man is able to accelerate, slow or so the progress of a country's development. The possibilities set by the environment are very fast and man has the right to choose. The possibilities offered by the nature is not equal. Some demand less for man while others meagre returns. The ratio between effort and return can be looked upon as the price nature extracts from man for the particular choice he makes. In no environment are possibilities limitless and for every choice a price must be paid.

(d) Cultural determinism -Human interest, prejudices and group values vary across space. The modification of environment largely depend on our perceptions and process of decision making. According to American scholars, the significance to man of the physical and biotic features of his habitat is a function of the attitudes and technical skills of man himself. This concept is widespread among American geographers, among which is Edward Ullman. After the second world war, the school of cultural determinism became widespread in Austria, Holland and Sweden.

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