GEOGRAPHY 305: THIS HUMAN WORLD

Course Overview:

The class is designed as an undergraduate lower-division survey course pertinent for those interested in majoring in geography, studying in geographic related fields, pursuing human rights issues, or gaining a deeper understanding of human/environmental relationships. Human geographers study the spatial dimensions of society. Generally speaking, geographers are interested in the human use of the earth and why things are located where they are. You may have learned your state capitols in high school geography, such as Austin is the capitol of Texas. But how did Austin become the capitol of Texas? Why is it in 2020 that what was once a small state capitol is now a booming tech city in one of the fastest growing metropolises in the United States? What ways is this population boom shaping the social form and function of the city? And what are the environmental impacts of such unprecedented growth? These sorts of critical questions are what geographers are interested in exploring in-depth. Major themes in geography consider the patterns and processes of population distribution, human settlements, migration, formation of cities, human impacts on nature, political and cultural borderlands, trade and transportation, environmental resources, cultural landscapes, and geopolitics. The course introduces students to the major themes in Human Geography and the critical issues that our planet faces today.


Purpose:
To provide you with conceptual tools, which will enable you to not only understand, analyze, and explain local, national and international events, phenomena, and changes for academic purposes, but also to enable you to use these concepts in ‘real’ life so that you develop critical skills to comprehend, and articulate the reality around you more comprehensively.


To encourage you to think critically; think critically means to delve really deep beneath appearances, superficiality, and manifestations to understand the mechanisms, the nuts and bolts, systemic imperatives, and the hidden power structures guiding events and phenomena.


To introduce you to the World of Geography, and demonstrate the use of spatial perspectives (like territory, resources, raw material, place-based specialized labor) in understanding and explaining global and local events.

© Robert Lemon / rdlemon@gmail.com

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