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Book by Lester Rowntree
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Les Rowntree is a Visiting Scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, where he researches and writes about environmental issues. This career change comes after three decades of teaching both Geography and Environmental Studies at San Jose State University in California. As an environmental geographer, Dr. Rowntree's interests focus on international environmental issues, biodiversity conservation, and human-caused global change. He sees world regional geography as a way to engage and inform students by giving them the conceptual tools needed to critically assess global issues. Dr. Rowntree has done research in Iceland, Alaska, Morocco, Mexico, Australia, and Europe, as well as in his native California. Current writing projects include a book on the natural history of California's coast, as well as textbooks in geography and environmental science. Martin Lewis is a Senior Lecturer in History at Stanford University. He has conducted extensive research on environmental geography in the Philippines and on the intellectual history of global geography. His publications include Wagering the Land: Ritual, Capital, and Environmental Degradation in the Cordillera of Northern Luzon, 1900-1986 (1992), and, with Karen Wigen, The Myth of Continents: A Critique of Metageography (1997). Dr. Lewis has traveled extensively in East, South, and Southeast Asia. His current research focuses on the geographical dimensions of globalization. In April 2009 Dr. Lewis was recognized by Time Magazine, as a favorite lecturer. Marie Price is a Professor of Geography and International Affairs at George Washington University. A Latin American specialist, Marie has conducted research in Belize, Mexico, Venezuela, Cuba, and Bolivia. She has also traveled widely throughout Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Her studies have explored human migration, natural resource use, environmental conservation, and regional development. She is a non-resident fellow of the Migration Policy Institute, a non-partisan think tank that focuses on immigration. Dr. Price brings to Globalization and Diversity a special interest in regions as dynamic spatial constructs that are shaped over time through both global and local forces. Her publications include the co-edited book, Migrants to the Metropolis: The Rise of Immigrant Gateway Cities (2008, Syracuse University Press) and numerous academic articles and book chapters. William Wyckoff is a geographer in the Department of Earth Sciences at Montana State University specializing in the cultural and historical geography of North America. He has written and co-edited several books on North American settlement geography, including The Developer's Frontier: The Making of the Western New York Landscape (1988), The Mountainous West: Explorations in Historical Geography (1995) (with Lary M. Dilsaver), Creating Colorado: The Making of a Western American Landscape 1860-1940 (1999), and On the Road Again: Montana's Changing Landscape (2006). In 2003 he received Montana State's Cox Family Fund for Excellence Faculty Award for Teaching and Scholarship. A World Regional Geography instructor for 26 years, Dr. Wyckoff emphasizes in the classroom the connections between the everyday lives of his students and the larger global geographies that surround them and increasingly shape their future.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
Places fascinate geographers. From an early age, we accumulate maps and dream about faraway corners of the world. Those of us lucky enough to make a living in geography also want to understand why the world works the way it does, how its unique regions have taken shape, and how those regions are increasingly interconnected. Those fundamental curiosities brought us together to create something new and different: an interpretation of world regional geography that was deeply appreciative of global diversity and that looked with a fresh and penetrating eye at the aspects of modern life that tie us all together.
The result has been our own odyssey of exploration, a pooling of expertise and enthusiasm that we hope can offer students a perspective that will stay with them long after they leave the classroom. As an introduction to the field of geography, this book provides a view of the world that will serve students well in the early twenty-first century. This view weds environment, people, and place; ponders how those relationships play out in particular regions; and assesses how powerful processes of globalization are reshaping those relationships in new and often unanticipated ways. Globalization and Diversity is the product of a shared vision that we believe demonstrates the essential and invaluable role that geography can play in all our lives.
Objective and Approach
Globalization and Diversity is an issues-oriented textbook for college and university world regional geography classes that explicitly recognizes the geographic changes accompanying today's rapid globalization. With this focus, we join the many who argue that globalization is the most fundamental reorganization of the planet's socioeconomic, cultural, and geopolitical structure since the Industrial Revolution. The explicit recognition of this premise provides the point of departure for this book. As geographers, we think it essential for students to understand two interactive tensions. First, they need to appreciate and critically ponder the consequences of converging environmental, cultural, political, and economic systems through forces of globalization. Second, they need to deepen their understanding of the creation and persistence of geographic diversity and difference. The interaction and tension between these opposing forces of homogenization and diversification forms a current running throughout the following chapters and is reflected in our title, Globalization and Diversity.
Globalization and Diversity is drawn from our longer and more comprehensive text, Diversity Amid Globalization, Second Edition. In this new book, we focus on the core topics that professors and students need in an introductory course about world regional geography, while simultaneously preserving the globalization approach that characterizes our larger teat. Globalization and Diversity will be ideal for those professors and students who prefer a briefer approach in order to enhance classroom flexibility or to more easily supplement their lectures with outside materials.
Chapter Organization and Features
As are all other world regional geography textbooks, Globalization and Diversity is structured to explain and describe the major world regions of Asia, Africa, the Americas, and so on. These 12 regional chapters, however, depart somewhat from traditional world regional textbooks. Instead of filling them with descriptions of individual countries, we place most of that important material in readily accesible ancillaries, specifically, in the textbook website and in the instructor's manual. This leaves us free to develop five important thematic sections as the organizational basis for each regional chapter. We begin with "Environmental Geography" which discusses the physical geography of each region as well as current environmental issues. Next, we assess "Population and Settlement" geography, in which demography, land use, and settlement (including cities) are discussed. We also provide a section on "Cultural Coherence and Diversity," which examines the geography of language and religion, yet also explores current cultural tensions resulting from the interplay of globalization and diversity. The section on each region's "Geopolitical Framework" then treats the dynamic political geography of the region, including microregionalism, separatism, ethnic conflicts, global terrorism, and supranational organizations. Finally, we conclude each regional treatment with a section titled "Economic and Social Development," in which we analyze each region's economic framework as well as its social geography, including gender issues.
This regional treatment follows two substantive introductory chapters that provide the conceptual and theoretical framework of human and physical geography necessary to understand our dynamic world. In the first chapter, students are introduced to the notion of globalization and are asked to ponder the costs and benefits of the globalization process, a critical perspective that is becoming increasingly common and important to understand. Following this, the geographical foundation for each of the five thematic sections is examined. This discussion draws heavily on the major concepts fundamental to an introductory university geography course. The second chapter, "The Changing Global Environment," presents the essential concepts of global physical geography, including, climate, hydrology, and biogeography.
Globalization and Diversity offers a pedagogically unique cartography program. Seven of the maps in each chapter are constructed with the same theme and similar data and on the same base map so that readers can easily draw comparisons between different regions. Thus, in every regional chapter, readers will find an introductory regional placename and feature map, a map of the physical geography of the region, a climate map, an environmental issues map, a population density map, a language geography map, and a map showing the geopolitical issues of the region. In addition, each regional chapter also presents other maps illustrating such major themes as ethnic tensions, social development, and economic activity.
In addition, six author field trips are included in the accompanying CD. These trips highlight localities that have been profoundly influenced through globalization. In selecting these places, the authors have drawn upon their own areas of research to illustrate many of the themes discussed in the regional chapters. We feel that this will be an exciting addition to the classroom that will help students visualize concepts and promote discussion.
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