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Human Geography AP Exam


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Absolute Direction
A compass direction such as north or south
Absolute Distance
The physical distance between two points usually measured in miles or kilometers
Absolute Location
The position or place of a certain item on the suface of the earth as expressed in degrees, minutes, and seconds of latitude and longitude
The degree of ease with which it is possible to reach a certain location from other locations. Accessibility vaires from place to place and can be measured
Cultural modification resulting from intercultural borrowing. In cultural geography, the term is used to designate the change that occurs in the culture of indigenous peoples when contact is made with a society that is technologically more advanced
Acid Rain
A growing environmental peril whereby acidified rainwater severly damages plant and animal life. Caused by the oxides of sulfur and nitrogen that are reliease into the atmosphere when coal, oil, and natural gas are burned, especially in major manufacturing zones.
The upper fortified part of an ancient Greek city, usually devoted to religious purposes
Activity Space
The space within which daily activity occurs
Age-Sex Pyramid
A graphic representation of a population showing the percentages of the total population by age and sex, normally in five-year groups.
Agglomerated Settlement
A compact, closely packed settlement (usually a hamlet or larger village) sharply demarcated from adjoining farmlands
A process involving the clustering or concentrating of people or activities. The term often refers to manufacturing plants and businesses that benefit from close proximity beracuse they share skilled-labor pools and technological and financial amenities
Relating to the use of land in rural communities or to agricultural societies in general
A general term for large-scale, mechanized industrial agriculture that is cotrolled by corporate interests.
Agricultural Density
The # of inhabitants per unit of agricultural land. As used in population geography, agricultural density excludes urban residents so that it reflects the pressure of population in rural areas
Agricultural Revolution
The revolutionary transformation of agricultureal practices, systems, and production.
The purposeful tending of crops and livestock in order to produce food and fiber
The belief that inanimate objects, such as hills, rocks, rivers, and other elements of the natural landscape, possess souls and can help as well as hinder human efforts on the Earth
Antecedent Boundary
A political boundary that existed before the cultural landscape emerged and stayed in place while people moved in to occupy the surrounding area
Anthropogeographic Boundaries
Political boundaries that coincide substantially with cultural discontiniuties in the human landscape, such as religious or linguistic transitions
The Afrikaans term given to the policies of racial separation once practiced in South Africa and to the highly segregated sociographical patterns they produced - a system now being dismantled.
The use of a river segment or an artificial body of water such as a pond for the raising and harvesting of food products, including fish, shellfish, and even seaweed.
Land fit for cultivation
Arithmetic Population Density
The population of a country or region expressed as an average per unit area. The figure is derived by dividing the population of the areal unit by the # of swuare kilometers or miles that make up the unit
An autocratic government hold absolute power; rule is often by one person or a small group of persons who control the country by despotic means
Basic Activities
Economic activities whos products are exported beyond a regions limites.
Birth Rate
The crude birth rate is expressed as the annual number of live births per 1000 individuals within a given population
Break-of-Bulk point
A location along a transport route where goods must be transferred from one carrier to another. In a portm the cargoes if oceangoing ships are unloaded and put on trains
a traditional building material made of hard, oven-baked or sun-baked blocks of mud
Buffer Zone
A set of countries separating ideological or political adversaries. (Thailand was a buffer state between British and French colonial domains in SE Asia)
The art and science of making maps, including data compilation, layout, and design.
Caste System
The strict social segregation of people - specifically in India's Hindu society - on the basis of ancestry and occupation
A periodic and offical count of a country's population
Central Business District (CBD)
The downtown heart of a central city, the CBD is marked by high land values, a concentration of business and commerce, and the clustering of the tallest buildings.
Central place
Any point or place in the urban hierarchy, such as a town or city, having a certain economic reach or hinterland.
Central Place Theory
Theory proposed by Walter Christaller that explains how and where central places in the urban hierarchy would be functionally and spatially distributed with respect to one another.
The strength of an urban center in its capacity to attract producers and consumers to its facilities; a cities "reach" into the surrounding region
Centrifugal Forces
A term employed to designate forces that tend to divide a country - such as internal religious, linguistic, ethnic, or ideological differences.
Centripetal Forces
Forces that unite and bind a country together - such as a strong national culture, shared ideological objectives, and a common faith
Child Mortality Rate
A figure that describes the # of children that die between the first and fifth years of their lives in a given population
In political geography, the system of integration and movement through language, education, transportation, and communication
An independent political entity consisting of a single city with (and sometimes without) and immediate hinterland. The ancient city-states of Greece have their moden equivalent in Singapore
Compact State
A polotico-geographical term to describe a state that possesses a roughly circular, oval, or rectangualr territory, in which the distance from the geometric center to any point on the boundary is not very different. Examples - Poland, and Cambodia
Concentric Zone Model
A structural model of the American central xirt that suggests the existence of five concentric land use rings arranged around a common center
A philosophy of ethics, education, and public service based on the writings of Confucius and traditionally thought of as one of the core elements of Chinese culture
Contagious Diffusion
The distance-controlled spreading of an idea, innovation, or some other item through a local population by contact from person to person- analogous to the communication of a contagious illness
Continental Drift
The notion hypothesized by Alfred Wegener concerning the fragmentation of Pangaea and the slow movement of the moden continents away from this core supercontinent
Core-Periphery Model
A model that describes how economic, political, and/or cultural power is spatially distributed between dominant core regions, and more marginal or dependent semi-peripheral, and peripheral regions
Core Region
The centers of economic, political, and/or cultural power within a given territorial entity
Cultural Landscape
The forms and artifacts sequentially placed on the physical landscape by the activities of various human occupants. By this progressive imprinting of the human presence, the physical landscape is modified into the cultural landscape.
Culture Hearth
Heartland, source area, innovation centerl place of origin of a major culture
Culture Realm
A cluster of regions in which related culture systems prevail. In North America, the United States and canada form a culture realm, but Mexico belongs to a different culture realm
Culture Trait
A single element of normal practice in a culture, such as the wearing of a turban
Death Rate
The crude death rate is expressed as the annual number of deaths per 100 individuals within a given population
The process of industrial deconcentration in response to technological advances and/or increasing costs due to congestion and competition.
In political geography, the translation of the written terms of a boundary treaty, into a offical cartographic representation
The actual placing of a political boundary on the landscape by means of barriers, fences, or walls.
Demographic Transition model
Multistage modelof changes in population growth exhibited by countries undergoing industrialization. High birth rates and death rates are followed by plunging death rates, producing a huge net population gain
The process whereby regions within a state demand and gain political strength and growing autonomy at the expense of the central government
The spatial spreading or dissemination of a culture element (technology) or some other phenomenon (diseases)
Domino Theory
The belief that political destabilization in one country can result in the collapse of order in a neighboring state, starting a chain reaction of collapse
Elongated State
A state whose territory is decidedly long and narrow in that its length is at least six times greater than its average width. Chile and Vietnam are examples.
A person moving away from a country
A piece of territory that is surrounded by another political unit of which it is not a part
A place, usually a port city, where goods are imported, stred, and transshipped
Ethnic Cleansing
The slaughter and/or forced removalof one ethnic group from its homes and lands by another ethnic group
European State Model
A state consisting of a legally defined territory inhabited by a population governed from a capital city by a representative government
A bounded piece of territory that is part of a particular state but lies separated from it by the territory of another state
Folk Culture
Cultural traits such as dress modes, dwellings, traditions, and institutions of usually small, tradition-bound communites
Formal Region
A type of region marked by a certain degree of homogeniety in one or more phenomena
Forced Migration
Human migration flows in which the movers have no choice but to relocate
Forward Capital
Capital city positioned in actually or potentially ceontested territory, usually near an international border
Fragmented State
A state whose territory consistes of several separate parts. Example - Philippines
Zone of advance penetration, usually of contentionl and area not fully integrated into a national state
Functional Region
A region defined by the particular set of activities or interactions that occur within it
Redistricting for advantage, or the practice of dividing areas into electoral districts to give one political party an electoral majority in a large number of districts while concentrating the voting strength of the opposition in as few districts as possible
Heartland Theory
Halford Mackinder. Any political power based in the heart of Eurasia could gain sufficient strength to eventually dominate the world
Industrial Revolution
The term applied to the social and economic changes in agriculture, commerce, and manufacturing that resulted from technological innovations
Infant Mortality Rate (IMR)
Describes the # of babies that die within the first year of their lives in a given population
A policy of cultural extension and potential poltical expansion aimed at a nation group living in a neighboring country
Least Cost Theory
Alfred Weber. The location of manufacturing establishments is determents by the minimization of three critical expenses: labor, transportation, and agglomeration
Mental Map
Image or pucture of the way space is organized as determined by an individual's perception, impression, and knowledge of that space
A country whose population possesses a substantial degree of cultural homogeneity and unity.
Perceptual Region
A region that exists as a conceptualization or an idea and not as physically demarcated entity
A lingua franca that has been simplified and modified through contact with other languages
Quaternary Industries
Service sector industries concerned with the collection, processing, and manipulation of information and capital. Examples include finance, administration, insurance, and legal services
Quinary Industries
Service sector industries that require high level of specialized knowledge or technical skill. Examples include scientific research and high level management
Rank-Size Rule
In a model urban hierarchy, the population of a cirt or town will be inversely proportioned to its rank in the hierarchy
Relict Boundary
A political boundary that has ceased to function, but the imprint of which can still be detected on the cultural landscape
Subsequent Boundary
A political boundary that developed contemporaneously with the evoltution of the majoe elements of the cultural landscape through which it passes
A venture involving three or more national states- political, economic, and/or cultural cooperation to promote shared objectives. Common Market is one org
Study of place names
The process by which towns and cities grow and become more densely populated and spatially expansive
World Cities
Dominant cities in terms of their role in the global political economy.

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