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Glossary

  • Page ID
    71936
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    Glossary Entries
    Word(s) Definition Image Caption Link Source
    Aborigines People native to Australia when the European colonialists arrived.        
    Aborigines People native to Australia when the European colonialists arrived.        
    Absolute location An exact point on the earth’s surface that can be identified by latitude and longitude.        
    Absolute location An exact point on the earth’s surface that can be identified by latitude and longitude.        
    acid rain When nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide mix with water molecules in the atmosphere to create acidic precipitation.        
    acid rain When nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide mix with water molecules in the atmosphere to create acidic precipitation.        
    African Diaspora The disbursement of people with an African heritage to other parts of the world mainly through the slave trade.        
    African Diaspora The disbursement of people with an African heritage to other parts of the world mainly through the slave trade.        
    African Union Agreements in 2001 between African states to form a united body to focus on issues within the African continent.        
    African Union Agreements in 2001 between African states to form a united body to focus on issues within the African continent.        
    Afrikaners The Dutch-based settlers of Southern Africa during the colonial era who were originally known as the Boers.        
    Afrikaners The Dutch-based settlers of Southern Africa during the colonial era who were originally known as the Boers.        
    agrarian revolution Post-Renaissance agricultural transformation that introduced new technology, crops, and land reforms that greatly enhanced agricultural production in Europe.        
    agrarian revolution Post-Renaissance agricultural transformation that introduced new technology, crops, and land reforms that greatly enhanced agricultural production in Europe.        
    Al Jazeera International news agency based in Qatar.        
    Al Jazeera International news agency based in Qatar.        
    al-Qaeda Anti-Western terrorist group founded by Osama bin Laden.        
    al-Qaeda Anti-Western terrorist group founded by Osama bin Laden.        
    Alawite Minority religious group that is an offshoot from Shia Islam and has controlled Syria for decades.        
    Alawite Minority religious group that is an offshoot from Shia Islam and has controlled Syria for decades.        
    altiplano Spanish term for “valley.” The Altiplano in South America is the region located around Lake Titicaca between two ranges of the Andes.        
    altiplano Spanish term for “valley.” The Altiplano in South America is the region located around Lake Titicaca between two ranges of the Andes.        
    altitudinal zonation Vertical environmental zones that change with altitude in mountainous regions.        
    altitudinal zonation Vertical environmental zones that change with altitude in mountainous regions.        
    American Dream The belief that through hard work a person can achieve upward mobility and financial success, no matter his or her background.        
    American Dream The belief that through hard work a person can achieve upward mobility and financial success, no matter his or her background.        
    Amerindian Ethnicity of people whose ancestors are native to the Americas.        
    Ancona Line An imaginary line that cuts across Italy from Rome to Ancona and divides Italy into northern Italy and southern Italy.        
    Ancona Line An imaginary line that cuts across Italy from Rome to Ancona and divides Italy into northern Italy and southern Italy.        
    apartheid A legally institutionalized policy of segregation (in South Africa) based on ethnic background or skin color.        
    apartheid A legally institutionalized policy of segregation (in South Africa) based on ethnic background or skin color.        
    Armenian Apostolic Church The main religion in Armenia, the church dates to the fourth century CE.        
    Armenian Apostolic Church The main religion in Armenia, the church dates to the fourth century CE.        
    Asia Minor The ancient region that is present-day Turkey.        
    Asia Minor The ancient region that is present-day Turkey.        
    Atlantic Trade Triangle The shipping trade that moved goods and people between Europe, Africa, and the New World.        
    Atlantic Trade Triangle The shipping trade that moved goods and people between Europe, Africa, and the New World.        
    Automobile suburbs A residential area outside the city center to which people commute by automobile.        
    Automobile suburbs A residential area outside the city center to which people commute by automobile.        
    Axis of Evil Term used in a 2002 speech by US president George W. Bush referring to Iraq, Iran, and North Korea for their aspirations to acquire chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons and their support of terrorist activities.        
    Axis of Evil Term used in a 2002 speech by US president George W. Bush referring to Iraq, Iran, and North Korea for their aspirations to acquire chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons and their support of terrorist activities.        
    Bamboo Curtain Political policies in China restricting people from entering or leaving the country.        
    Bamboo Curtain Political policies in China restricting people from entering or leaving the country.        
    banana republic Political state whose economy is dominated by a single crop, which happens to be bananas.        
    banana republic Political state whose economy is dominated by a single crop, which happens to be bananas.        
    barrios Term used to describe a slum in the northern parts of South America and Middle America.        
    barrios Term used to describe a slum in the northern parts of South America and Middle America.        
    Benelux Agreement Supranational agreement between Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg that provided an early pattern for the European Union.        
    Benelux Agreement Supranational agreement between Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg that provided an early pattern for the European Union.        
    Berlin Conference Meeting called in 1884 by Otto Von Bismarck of Germany with the purpose of dividing and organizing African colonies by European colonial powers. The people who attended were European and American; Africans were not invited.        
    Berlin Conference Meeting called in 1884 by Otto Von Bismarck of Germany with the purpose of dividing and organizing African colonies by European colonial powers. The people who attended were European and American; Africans were not invited.        
    Biafra Separatist republic in southeastern Nigeria from 1967 to 1970.        
    Biafra Separatist republic in southeastern Nigeria from 1967 to 1970.        
    blood diamonds Diamonds used as currency to fund civil war or armed conflicts.        
    blood diamonds Diamonds used as currency to fund civil war or armed conflicts.        
    Bollywood Indian film industry based in Mumbai; the title Bollywood is a combination of the names Hollywood and Bombay.        
    Bollywood Indian film industry based in Mumbai; the title Bollywood is a combination of the names Hollywood and Bombay.        
    Bolsheviks The political group, led by Vladimir Lenin, that won the civil war in Russia (1917–23) and took control of the new USSR.        
    Bolsheviks The political group, led by Vladimir Lenin, that won the civil war in Russia (1917–23) and took control of the new USSR.        
    brain drain The loss of educated people or professionals from a peripheral area who move to a core area.        
    brain drain The loss of educated people or professionals from a peripheral area who move to a core area.        
    business process outsourcing (BPO) Relocation of business tasks to another country where labor costs are lower. The term has mainly been applied to business involving digital data that can be transferred through high-speed Internet and communications technology.        
    business process outsourcing (BPO) Relocation of business tasks to another country where labor costs are lower. The term has mainly been applied to business involving digital data that can be transferred through high-speed Internet and communications technology.        
    Calendar Lake A name applied to Lake Malawi because it is 365 miles long and 52 miles wide.        
    Calendar Lake A name applied to Lake Malawi because it is 365 miles long and 52 miles wide.        
    Camp David Accord A 1977 peace agreement between Israel and Egypt to not go to war again.        
    Camp David Accord A 1977 peace agreement between Israel and Egypt to not go to war again.        
    cartography The art and science of map making.        
    cartography The art and science of map making.        
    caste system Rigid social hierarchy based on Hindu traditions that people are born into based on their past lives.        
    caste system Rigid social hierarchy based on Hindu traditions that people are born into based on their past lives.        
    Cease-Fire Line Demilitarized zone dividing North and South Korea.        
    Cease-Fire Line Demilitarized zone dividing North and South Korea.        
    center pivot irrigation A system of crop irrigation in which the irrigation machinery rotates from a center point, creating circular fields. Center pivot irrigation was used in the Great Plains to irrigate crops with water from the Ogallala Aquifer.        
    center pivot irrigation A system of crop irrigation in which the irrigation machinery rotates from a center point, creating circular fields. Center pivot irrigation was used in the Great Plains to irrigate crops with water from the Ogallala Aquifer.        
    central business district (CBD) The core area of a city with a high concentration of business and commerce that was developed in early industrial cities to provide access to labor, factories, and the market.        
    central business district (CBD) The core area of a city with a high concentration of business and commerce that was developed in early industrial cities to provide access to labor, factories, and the market.        
    central business district (CBD) The location in a city that is considered the downtown, characterized by high rents and high density of buildings and commerce.        
    central business district (CBD) The location in a city that is considered the downtown, characterized by high rents and high density of buildings and commerce.        
    centrifugal forces Cultural forces that divide or separate people in a political unit.        
    centrifugal forces Cultural forces that divide or separate people in a political unit.        
    cerrado Term referring to the large savanna grasslands with occasional scrub forests. Most noted for the region in Brazil between the tropical rain forests of the Amazon Basin and the Brazilian Highlands.        
    cerrado Term referring to the large savanna grasslands with occasional scrub forests. Most noted for the region in Brazil between the tropical rain forests of the Amazon Basin and the Brazilian Highlands.        
    Chinese Taipei Title allowed by the Chinese government for the designation of Taiwan.        
    Chinese Taipei Title allowed by the Chinese government for the designation of Taiwan.        
    Chunnel The tunnel under the English Channel connecting Great Britain with France.        
    Chunnel The tunnel under the English Channel connecting Great Britain with France.        
    climate types Long-term weather patterns based on environmental conditions, including temperature and precipitation.        
    climate types Long-term weather patterns based on environmental conditions, including temperature and precipitation.        
    coffee republic Political state whose economy is dominated by a single crop, which happens to be coffee.        
    coffee republic Political state whose economy is dominated by a single crop, which happens to be coffee.        
    Cold War The protracted competition for military strength, scientific prowess, economic growth, and control of resources between the United States and the Soviet Union and their respective allies from 1945 to 1991.        
    Cold War The protracted competition for military strength, scientific prowess, economic growth, and control of resources between the United States and the Soviet Union and their respective allies from 1945 to 1991.        
    colonialism The development of colonies outside the home country, usually for economic gain or expansion of the empire.        
    colonialism The development of colonies outside the home country, usually for economic gain or expansion of the empire.        
    command economy An economy in which economic decisions are made by a central authority and not according to market demands.        
    command economy An economy in which economic decisions are made by a central authority and not according to market demands.        
    Common Market A precursor to the European Union created by the Treaty of Rome to establish common institutions and implement standards for trade and commerce among them.        
    Common Market A precursor to the European Union created by the Treaty of Rome to establish common institutions and implement standards for trade and commerce among them.        
    consumer society An economy fueled by a high level of consumption and spending where the population is dominated by higher incomes and smaller family sizes.        
    consumer society An economy fueled by a high level of consumption and spending where the population is dominated by higher incomes and smaller family sizes.        
    core-periphery spatial relationship Relationship between the urban core areas, which hold the economic, political, educational, cultural, and industrial power, and the rural peripheral regions, which make their living off the land and provide food and raw materials to the core but have little power over the markets where these goods are sold.        
    core-periphery spatial relationship Relationship between the urban core areas, which hold the economic, political, educational, cultural, and industrial power, and the rural peripheral regions, which make their living off the land and provide food and raw materials to the core but have little power over the markets where these goods are sold.        
    corporate colonialism Neocolonialism as it applies to the power of multinational corporations to exploit the labor and resources of a country without taking responsibility for its physical control.        
    corporate colonialism Neocolonialism as it applies to the power of multinational corporations to exploit the labor and resources of a country without taking responsibility for its physical control.        
    cultural hearth Region or area where an early human civilization began.        
    cultural hearth Region or area where an early human civilization began.        
    cultural landscape Places where the earth’s surface has been altered by human activity.        
    cultural landscape Places where the earth’s surface has been altered by human activity.        
    culture hearths The place where a new culture forms and from which it spreads.        
    culture hearths The place where a new culture forms and from which it spreads.        
    cyclone Tropical cyclone that occurs in the Indian Ocean region and in the South Pacific Ocean.        
    cyclone Tropical cyclone that occurs in the Indian Ocean region and in the South Pacific Ocean.        
    Dalits (Untouchables or Harijan) The lowest level in the Hindu caste system. The term untouchables has been replaced by the term Dalits; Dalits is seen as being more appropriate. Gandhi used the term Harijan for this caste, meaning “Children of God.”        
    Dalits (Untouchables or Harijan) The lowest level in the Hindu caste system. The term untouchables has been replaced by the term Dalits; Dalits is seen as being more appropriate. Gandhi used the term Harijan for this caste, meaning “Children of God.”        
    Dayton Accord An agreement reached by leaders of former Yugoslavia to end the war in Bosnia.        
    Dayton Accord An agreement reached by leaders of former Yugoslavia to end the war in Bosnia.        
    deforestation The removal of trees at an unsustainable rate.        
    deforestation The removal of trees at an unsustainable rate.        
    desertification Loss of plant life and the encroachment of sand, creating desert conditions.        
    desertification Loss of plant life and the encroachment of sand, creating desert conditions.        
    devolution The process whereby regions within a country demand autonomy at the central government’s expense.        
    devolution The process whereby regions within a country demand autonomy at the central government’s expense.        
    doabs Silt deposits formed by changing river channels along the Indus River in Pakistan.        
    doabs Silt deposits formed by changing river channels along the Indus River in Pakistan.        
    domino effect Belief that if one country is affected in some way, then the neighboring countries will be affected in the same way. This term was mainly applied to Southeast Asia and Communism in Vietnam.        
    domino effect Belief that if one country is affected in some way, then the neighboring countries will be affected in the same way. This term was mainly applied to Southeast Asia and Communism in Vietnam.        
    doubling time The time it takes a population to double. The accepted formula is 70 ÷ population growth rate = doubling time in years.        
    doubling time The time it takes a population to double. The accepted formula is 70 ÷ population growth rate = doubling time in years.        
    Druze Minority religious group that is semi-Islamic and incorporates Gnostic or neo-Platonic philosophies.        
    Druze Minority religious group that is semi-Islamic and incorporates Gnostic or neo-Platonic philosophies.        
    economic dragon Economic superpower in Asia—often used to refer to Japan.        
    economic dragon Economic superpower in Asia—often used to refer to Japan.        
    economic tigers Quickly emerging economic centers in Asia that now include South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore.        
    economic tigers Quickly emerging economic centers in Asia that now include South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore.        
    ecumene Habitable zone for permanent human settlement.        
    ecumene Habitable zone for permanent human settlement.        
    edge city Sometimes called a “suburban downtown,” a high-density business district that forms outside the limits of a traditional city, often at the intersection of major highways. Edge cities may contain shopping malls, hotels, office parks, and entertainment venues.        
    edge city Sometimes called a “suburban downtown,” a high-density business district that forms outside the limits of a traditional city, often at the intersection of major highways. Edge cities may contain shopping malls, hotels, office parks, and entertainment venues.        
    Eightfold Path (The Middle Way) Buddhist principles that lead to the end of suffering and toward self-awakening and enlightenment.        
    Eightfold Path (The Middle Way) Buddhist principles that lead to the end of suffering and toward self-awakening and enlightenment.        
    ejidos Land system in Mexico in which the community owns the land but individuals can gain profit from it by sharing resources.        
    ejidos Land system in Mexico in which the community owns the land but individuals can gain profit from it by sharing resources.        
    embargo Restriction on economic trade with a country.        
    embargo Restriction on economic trade with a country.        
    emir A ruler or chief in Islamic countries.        
    emir A ruler or chief in Islamic countries.        
    Empty Quarter Land in western Maine that has virtually no inhabitants but a robust forestry industry.        
    Empty Quarter Land in western Maine that has virtually no inhabitants but a robust forestry industry.        
    entrepôt A break-of-bulk point where large shipments arrive and are broken down into smaller shipments for delivery to local regions on smaller transportation systems.        
    entrepôt A break-of-bulk point where large shipments arrive and are broken down into smaller shipments for delivery to local regions on smaller transportation systems.        
    Equinoxes Time of the year in March and September when the line of direct sunlight hits the equator; at this time, days and nights are of equal length.        
    Equinoxes Time of the year in March and September when the line of direct sunlight hits the equator; at this time, days and nights are of equal length.        
    ethnic cleansing The forced removal of one people (usually an ethnic group) from an area by another by military force or war.        
    ethnic cleansing The forced removal of one people (usually an ethnic group) from an area by another by military force or war.        
    ethnic cleansing The forced removal of one people by another through armed force.        
    ethnic cleansing The forced removal of one people by another through armed force.        
    ethnicity The traits, attributes, or national identity that people are born with.        
    ethnicity The traits, attributes, or national identity that people are born with.        
    exclaves Territory of one country that is physically separated from that country.        
    exclaves Territory of one country that is physically separated from that country.        
    family size The number of children raised in a household.        
    family size The number of children raised in a household.        
    Far East General European term for the regions of Asia including India and China.        
    Far East General European term for the regions of Asia including India and China.        
    favelas Term used to describe a slum in parts of South America, particularly Brazil.        
    favelas Term used to describe a slum in parts of South America, particularly Brazil.        
    fertigation System of drip irrigation mixed with fertilizers used in Israel.        
    fertigation System of drip irrigation mixed with fertilizers used in Israel.        
    Fertile Crescent The region of Mesopotamia and the Levant where early human civilization flourished.        
    Fertile Crescent The region of Mesopotamia and the Levant where early human civilization flourished.        
    formal region Area with specific agreed upon administrative, governmental or political boundaries.        
    formal region Area with specific agreed upon administrative, governmental or political boundaries.        
    formal sector Economic activity that is regulated, controlled, or taxed by the government.        
    formal sector Economic activity that is regulated, controlled, or taxed by the government.        
    forward capital Capital city that has been moved to advance development or to protect the interest of the country moving it.        
    forward capital Capital city that has been moved to advance development or to protect the interest of the country moving it.        
    Francophones A native French-speaking person or group.        
    Francophones A native French-speaking person or group.        
    free-trade zone A geographic area that does not usually impose a tax or fee on doing business within its border; a tax-free zone of economic activity.        
    free-trade zone A geographic area that does not usually impose a tax or fee on doing business within its border; a tax-free zone of economic activity.        
    Functional regions Area defined by boundaries related to a function.        
    Functional regions Area defined by boundaries related to a function.        
    GDP per capita The total value of goods and services produced by a country, divided by the population.        
    GDP per capita The total value of goods and services produced by a country, divided by the population.        
    Geographic information science (GIS) Science (or system) that uses a computer program to sort layers of digital data to create specialized maps focusing on specific topics.        
    Geographic information science (GIS) Science (or system) that uses a computer program to sort layers of digital data to create specialized maps focusing on specific topics.        
    Geography The spatial study of the earth’s surface.        
    Geography The spatial study of the earth’s surface.        
    geometric boundaries Political boundaries based on straight lines rather than physical features.        
    geometric boundaries Political boundaries based on straight lines rather than physical features.        
    geopolitics The geography of international relations.        
    geopolitics The geography of international relations.        
    Geospatial techniques The tools used by geographers to illustrate, manage and manipulate spatial data, which can include cartography, GIS, and remote sensing.        
    Geospatial techniques The tools used by geographers to illustrate, manage and manipulate spatial data, which can include cartography, GIS, and remote sensing.        
    geotourism Type of sustainable tourism that focuses on the stewardship of place and the preservation of its essential character.        
    geotourism Type of sustainable tourism that focuses on the stewardship of place and the preservation of its essential character.        
    glasnost Russian word for “openness”; a program to foster political transparency and openness carried out by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in the 1980s.        
    glasnost Russian word for “openness”; a program to foster political transparency and openness carried out by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in the 1980s.        
    global positioning system (GPS) System that uses satellite signals to determine exact location on the earth’s surface.        
    global positioning system (GPS) System that uses satellite signals to determine exact location on the earth’s surface.        
    Globalization The integration of networks or systems between multiple countries that creates exchanges or interdependencies between participating entities.        
    Globalization The integration of networks or systems between multiple countries that creates exchanges or interdependencies between participating entities.        
    Gold Coast Coastal area off West Africa in the region of the current country of Ghana.        
    Gold Coast Coastal area off West Africa in the region of the current country of Ghana.        
    Golden Triangle Border region between Burma, Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam that has traditionally been a major opium growing area for the world.        
    Golden Triangle Border region between Burma, Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam that has traditionally been a major opium growing area for the world.        
    Gondwanaland Pangaea was a supercontinent in very ancient times. Between about two hundred to five hundred million years ago, Gondwana was the southern portion of Pangaea and included most of the land in what is today the Southern Hemisphere.        
    Gondwanaland Pangaea was a supercontinent in very ancient times. Between about two hundred to five hundred million years ago, Gondwana was the southern portion of Pangaea and included most of the land in what is today the Southern Hemisphere.        
    Great Migration A massive migration of blacks from the South to cities of the North and West. Between 1910 and 1925, more than 10 percent of African Americans made the journey north.        
    Great Migration A massive migration of blacks from the South to cities of the North and West. Between 1910 and 1925, more than 10 percent of African Americans made the journey north.        
    Great Purge The largest of Soviet leader Josef Stalin’s purges of his perceived political enemies. From 1936 to 1938 he had about one million “enemies of the state” executed.        
    Great Purge The largest of Soviet leader Josef Stalin’s purges of his perceived political enemies. From 1936 to 1938 he had about one million “enemies of the state” executed.        
    gross national happiness Measure of cultural well-being used to guide development in Bhutan.        
    gross national happiness Measure of cultural well-being used to guide development in Bhutan.        
    Gulf Stream Ocean current that carries warmer water from the South Atlantic to the North Atlantic and moderates the temperature of Western Europe.        
    Gulf Stream Ocean current that carries warmer water from the South Atlantic to the North Atlantic and moderates the temperature of Western Europe.        
    hacienda Large land holding established by Spanish colonialists for social prestige and a comfortable lifestyle. In Mexico, haciendas allowed local Amerindian residents to live on the premises and work for the Spanish land owner.        
    hacienda Large land holding established by Spanish colonialists for social prestige and a comfortable lifestyle. In Mexico, haciendas allowed local Amerindian residents to live on the premises and work for the Spanish land owner.        
    haves and have-nots Those who have opportunities and advantages and those who do not.        
    haves and have-nots Those who have opportunities and advantages and those who do not.        
    hejira (hijra) The start of the Islamic calendar, which refers to when Muhammad fled from Mecca to Medina.        
    hejira (hijra) The start of the Islamic calendar, which refers to when Muhammad fled from Mecca to Medina.        
    Hezbollah Anti-Israeli group based in Lebanon.        
    Hezbollah Anti-Israeli group based in Lebanon.        
    high islands Islands usually of volcanic origin that can reach elevations in the thousands of feet.        
    high islands Islands usually of volcanic origin that can reach elevations in the thousands of feet.        
    human geography The study of human activity and its relationship to the earth’s surface.        
    human geography The study of human activity and its relationship to the earth’s surface.        
    imams Mosque leader in Islam.        
    imams Mosque leader in Islam.        
    imperial When a central state forcibly rules territory inhabited by people of different ethnicities, languages, or religions.        
    imperial When a central state forcibly rules territory inhabited by people of different ethnicities, languages, or religions.        
    index of economic development Five-stage model that illustrates the transition of a country from a rural society with large families to an urban society with small families and a consumer lifestyle.        
    index of economic development Five-stage model that illustrates the transition of a country from a rural society with large families to an urban society with small families and a consumer lifestyle.        
    Industrial Revolution, Late-1700s shift to coal for energy, the steam engine for power, the smelting of iron, and the concept of mass production that changed how goods were produced.        
    Industrial Revolution, Late-1700s shift to coal for energy, the steam engine for power, the smelting of iron, and the concept of mass production that changed how goods were produced.        
    informal sector Economic activity that is not regulated, controlled, or taxed by the government.        
    informal sector Economic activity that is not regulated, controlled, or taxed by the government.        
    insular region The region consisting of the islands of Southeast Asia—Brunei, East Timor, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Singapore.        
    insular region The region consisting of the islands of Southeast Asia—Brunei, East Timor, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Singapore.        
    Inuit Native peoples of the Arctic regions of Canada and other countries.        
    Inuit Native peoples of the Arctic regions of Canada and other countries.        
    Iron Curtain The physical barrier in the form of walls, barbed wire, and land mines that divided Eastern Europe and Western Europe during the Cold War.        
    Iron Curtain The physical barrier in the form of walls, barbed wire, or land mines that divided Eastern Europe and Western Europe during the Cold War.        
    Iron Curtain The physical barrier in the form of walls, barbed wire, or land mines that divided Eastern Europe and Western Europe during the Cold War.        
    Iron Curtain The physical barrier in the form of walls, barbed wire, and land mines that divided Eastern Europe and Western Europe during the Cold War.        
    Iron Curtain The physical barrier in the form of walls, barbed wire, or land mines that divided Eastern Europe and Western Europe during the Cold War.        
    Iron Curtain The physical barrier in the form of walls, barbed wire, or land mines that divided Eastern Europe and Western Europe during the Cold War.        
    Islamic Brotherhood Muslim-based organization in Egypt that was banned by the Egyptian government.        
    Islamic Brotherhood Muslim-based organization in Egypt that was banned by the Egyptian government.        
    Janjaweed Militias in Sudan hired by the Arabs to ethnically cleanse the Darfur region.        
    Janjaweed Militias in Sudan hired by the Arabs to ethnically cleanse the Darfur region.        
    Juche Policy of self-sufficiency and self-reliance in North Korea.        
    Juche Policy of self-sufficiency and self-reliance in North Korea.        
    Khalistan Proposed homeland for the Sikhs in the Punjab region of South Asia.        
    Khalistan Proposed homeland for the Sikhs in the Punjab region of South Asia.        
    Killing Fields Rural areas in Cambodia where Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge killed tens of thousands of people and buried them in mass graves often dug by the same people who were buried there before they were killed.        
    Killing Fields Rural areas in Cambodia where Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge killed tens of thousands of people and buried them in mass graves often dug by the same people who were buried there before they were killed.        
    Kremlin The seat of the Soviet, and then Russian, government. The Russian word for a fortress or walled city, the Kremlin is the ancient fortress in Moscow.        
    Kremlin The seat of the Soviet, and then Russian, government. The Russian word for a fortress or walled city, the Kremlin is the ancient fortress in Moscow.        
    Kurdistan Proposed state to include all Kurds in the Middle East.        
    Kurdistan Proposed state to include all Kurds in the Middle East.        
    Kyoto Protocol An international environmental treaty with the goal of achieving stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.        
    Kyoto Protocol An international environmental treaty with the goal of achieving stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.        
    Landslides When conditions such as high water saturation or an earthquake cause large amounts of earth to slide downward on a slope.        
    Landslides When conditions such as high water saturation or an earthquake cause large amounts of earth to slide downward on a slope.        
    language police Slang term for civil servants who enforce French language laws in Quebec.        
    language police Slang term for civil servants who enforce French language laws in Quebec.        
    Levant Land area bordering the eastern Mediterranean Sea that now includes Israel, Lebanon, and parts of western Syria.        
    Levant Land area bordering the eastern Mediterranean Sea that now includes Israel, Lebanon, and parts of western Syria.        
    Llanos Term referring to a treeless grassland region or plateau. Most noted for the region between the Andes and the Guiana Highlands along the Orinoco River basin of northern South America.        
    Llanos Term referring to a treeless grassland region or plateau. Most noted for the region between the Andes and the Guiana Highlands along the Orinoco River basin of northern South America.        
    loess Extremely fine silt or soil such as that found in the Yellow River Basin of China.        
    loess Extremely fine silt or soil such as that found in the Yellow River Basin of China.        
    long lots Farms in French Canada that were about ten times as long as they were wide.        
    long lots Farms in French Canada that were about ten times as long as they were wide.        
    madrassas Private religious schools that teach the Koran and Islamic Law.        
    madrassas Private religious schools that teach the Koran and Islamic Law.        
    Madrid Protocol Another name for the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty.        
    Madrid Protocol Another name for the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty.        
    mainland The interior portions of Mexico and Central America.        
    mainland The interior portions of Mexico and Central America.        
    Manifest Destiny The belief that it was the duty and destiny of Americans to continue to move westward and conquer all the land between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.        
    Manifest Destiny The belief that it was the duty and destiny of Americans to continue to move westward and conquer all the land between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.        
    Manufacturing Belt The upper Midwest and the northeastern United States; the heart of the early manufacturing sector.        
    Manufacturing Belt The upper Midwest and the northeastern United States; the heart of the early manufacturing sector.        
    Maori Polynesian people living in New Zealand when the European colonialists arrived.        
    Maori Polynesian people living in New Zealand when the European colonialists arrived.        
    maquiladoras Foreign-owned factories in Mexico that import most of the raw materials or components, assemble or process the product with local cheap labor, and export the finished product for profit.        
    maquiladoras Foreign-owned factories in Mexico that import most of the raw materials or components, assemble or process the product with local cheap labor, and export the finished product for profit.        
    market economy Economy based on free market determining supply and demand.        
    market economy Economy based on free market determining supply and demand.        
    megalopolis The continually built-up area from Washington, DC, to Boston.        
    megalopolis The continually built-up area from Washington, DC, to Boston.        
    Meiji Restoration The return of enlightened rule, starting in 1868 when modernizers took control of Japan.        
    Meiji Restoration The return of enlightened rule, starting in 1868 when modernizers took control of Japan.        
    melting pot The coming together a diverse group of immigrants to form one society or to share common ideals.        
    melting pot The coming together a diverse group of immigrants to form one society or to share common ideals.        
    mercantilism Economic principle that outlines the drive for governments to gain wealth through the control of trade, which encouraged the expansion of colonial activity in Europe during the colonial era.        
    mercantilism Economic principle that outlines the drive for governments to gain wealth through the control of trade, which encouraged the expansion of colonial activity in Europe during the colonial era.        
    Mesopotamia The “land between rivers,” referring to the land between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers.        
    Mesopotamia The “land between rivers,” referring to the land between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers.        
    mestizo People of mixed ethnicity, including European and Amerindian ethnicity.        
    mestizo People of mixed ethnicity, including European and Amerindian ethnicity.        
    microcredit Small loans extended to people without collateral to assist them in applying their skills to an economic enterprise.        
    microcredit Small loans extended to people without collateral to assist them in applying their skills to an economic enterprise.        
    Middle Passage The journey of ships carrying African slaves across the Atlantic Ocean.        
    Middle Passage The journey of ships carrying African slaves across the Atlantic Ocean.        
    monsoon Seasonal reversal of wind that is common in parts of Asia. The summer monsoon is usually associated with high amounts of rainfall.        
    monsoon Seasonal reversal of wind that is common in parts of Asia. The summer monsoon is usually associated with high amounts of rainfall.        
    Moors Berber-Arab alliance in North Africa that crossed the Strait of Gibraltar and brought Islam to the Iberian Peninsula.        
    Moors Berber-Arab alliance in North Africa that crossed the Strait of Gibraltar and brought Islam to the Iberian Peninsula.        
    Mount St. Helens The volcano in the US state of Washington that erupted in 1980.        
    Mount St. Helens The volcano in the US state of Washington that erupted in 1980.        
    Mujahideen Muslim fighters at war with those who attack or threaten their beliefs.        
    Mujahideen Muslim fighters at war with those who attack or threaten their beliefs.        
    mulattos A person with both European and African ancestry.        
    mulattos A person with both European and African ancestry.        
    mutawa’een Religious police in Saudi Arabia that monitor social behavior in public.        
    mutawa’een Religious police in Saudi Arabia that monitor social behavior in public.        
    nation-states Political unit in which the people (the nation) are unified under a similar heritage or culture and are under a unified common government (the state).        
    nation-states Political unit in which the people (the nation) are unified under a similar heritage or culture and are under a unified common government (the state).        
    National debt The amount of money owed by a country’s government.        
    National debt The amount of money owed by a country’s government.        
    natural increase Crude birth rate minus the crude death rate. If it is positive, then the population is growing; if it is negative, then the population is in decline. This does not take immigration into consideration as a component of population change.        
    natural increase Crude birth rate minus the crude death rate. If it is positive, then the population is growing; if it is negative, then the population is in decline. This does not take immigration into consideration as a component of population change.        
    New World Order Term used by US President George H. W. Bush in a speech in the early 1990s to address the actions of the Persian Gulf War to remove Saddam Hussein from Kuwait.        
    New World Order Term used by US President George H. W. Bush in a speech in the early 1990s to address the actions of the Persian Gulf War to remove Saddam Hussein from Kuwait.        
    Nirvana State of freedom from suffering and the uniting with the Supreme Being in Eastern religions.        
    Nirvana State of freedom from suffering and the uniting with the Supreme Being in Eastern religions.        
    North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Agreement signed by Canada, the United States, and Mexico in 1994 creating a trade bloc between the three countries.        
    North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Agreement signed by Canada, the United States, and Mexico in 1994 creating a trade bloc between the three countries.        
    old growth forests Forests that have not been removed by humans.        
    old growth forests Forests that have not been removed by humans.        
    Operation Desert Storm Military action to remove Saddam Hussein from power in Kuwait during the First Persian Gulf War in 1991.        
    Operation Desert Storm Military action to remove Saddam Hussein from power in Kuwait during the First Persian Gulf War in 1991.        
    Operation Enduring Freedom US war on terrorism around the world, which included the US invasion of Afghanistan to remove al-Qaeda in 2001.        
    Operation Enduring Freedom US war on terrorism around the world, which included the US invasion of Afghanistan to remove al-Qaeda in 2001.        
    Operation Restore Hope The 1992 mission conducted by US marines to stabilize the distribution of food aid from the port of Mogadishu to Somalia and Ethiopia.        
    Operation Restore Hope The 1992 mission conducted by US marines to stabilize the distribution of food aid from the port of Mogadishu to Somalia and Ethiopia.        
    overseas Chinese Ethnic Chinese who live outside of China.        
    overseas Chinese Ethnic Chinese who live outside of China.        
    ozone hole A major reduction in the amount of ozone found in a specific area of the stratosphere.        
    ozone hole A major reduction in the amount of ozone found in a specific area of the stratosphere.        
    Pacific Rim The coastal lands bordering the Pacific Ocean.        
    Pacific Rim The coastal lands bordering the Pacific Ocean.        
    Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Governing body that represents the Palestinians.        
    Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Governing body that represents the Palestinians.        
    Palestinians People who lived in the region of Palestine before Israel was recognized as a nation in 1948.        
    Palestinians People who lived in the region of Palestine before Israel was recognized as a nation in 1948.        
    Pan-African Movement to create African unity across the continent.        
    Pan-African Movement to create African unity across the continent.        
    Permafrost A layer of permanently frozen soil common in the Russian Arctic.        
    Permafrost A layer of permanently frozen soil common in the Russian Arctic.        
    Peronism Temporary movement in support of Argentina’s populist president Juan Perón and his wife, Eva, in response to their concern for the poor and the working class.        
    Peronism Temporary movement in support of Argentina’s populist president Juan Perón and his wife, Eva, in response to their concern for the poor and the working class.        
    Physical landscape The physical environmental features that make up the earth’s surface.        
    Physical landscape The physical environmental features that make up the earth’s surface.        
    physiologic density The number of people per unit (square mile) of arable land.        
    physiologic density The number of people per unit (square mile) of arable land.        
    plantation Agricultural unit focusing on a single cash crop with seasonal high-labor needs and usually operated by individuals not directly working the land. The plantation was common in the rimland of Middle America and more common during the era of slavery.        
    plantation Agricultural unit focusing on a single cash crop with seasonal high-labor needs and usually operated by individuals not directly working the land. The plantation was common in the rimland of Middle America and more common during the era of slavery.        
    polders Dry land reclaimed from the sea in the Netherlands.        
    polders Dry land reclaimed from the sea in the Netherlands.        
    political revolution Transformation of Europe was a result of diverse actions focused on ending continual warfare for the control of territory and introducing peaceful agreements that recognized sovereignty of territories ruled by representative government structures.        
    political revolution Transformation of Europe was a result of diverse actions focused on ending continual warfare for the control of territory and introducing peaceful agreements that recognized sovereignty of territories ruled by representative government structures.        
    polygamy The practice of a man or a woman having more than one spouse.        
    polygamy The practice of a man or a woman having more than one spouse.        
    population geography The examination of the spatial distribution of human populations.        
    population geography The examination of the spatial distribution of human populations.        
    population pyramids Graphic illustration of age cohorts by sex for a given population.        
    population pyramids Graphic illustration of age cohorts by sex for a given population.        
    primate city A country’s largest city that is usually twice the size of the next largest city and is exceptionally expressive of the national culture and persona.        
    primate city A country’s largest city that is usually twice the size of the next largest city and is exceptionally expressive of the national culture and persona.        
    qanats System of shafts or wells along a mountain slope that allows water to collect into a common underground channel, which is then diverted to wherever it is needed.        
    qanats System of shafts or wells along a mountain slope that allows water to collect into a common underground channel, which is then diverted to wherever it is needed.        
    Quaternary economic sector Division of the economy that deals with information collecting and processing, as well as management.        
    Quaternary economic sector Division of the economy that deals with information collecting and processing, as well as management.        
    rain shadow effect When mountains or high elevation relief restrict precipitation from reaching the other side of the mountains, resulting in arid or desert-like conditions.        
    rain shadow effect When mountains or high elevation relief restrict precipitation from reaching the other side of the mountains, resulting in arid or desert-like conditions.        
    rare earth elements A group of seventeen metallic ores that are often used in high-tech applications.        
    rare earth elements A group of seventeen metallic ores that are often used in high-tech applications.        
    realms The basic unit in world regionalization; a composite of human and environmental features.        
    realms The basic unit in world regionalization; a composite of human and environmental features.        
    regional complementarity When two areas can exchange goods or resources to satisfy both sides’ demands and both can benefit.        
    regional complementarity When two areas can exchange goods or resources to satisfy both sides’ demands and both can benefit.        
    Reincarnation Cycle of birth and death that the soul transmigrates through on the path to salvation or Nirvana.        
    Reincarnation Cycle of birth and death that the soul transmigrates through on the path to salvation or Nirvana.        
    relocation diffusion A phenomenon that starts at one point and propagates outward by relocating to a different location.        
    relocation diffusion A phenomenon that starts at one point and propagates outward by relocating to a different location.        
    remittances Money sent home by immigrants.        
    remittances Money sent home by immigrants.        
    Remote sensing The acquisition of data about the earth’s surface through aerial photographs taken from airplanes or images created from satellites orbiting the earth.        
    Remote sensing The acquisition of data about the earth’s surface through aerial photographs taken from airplanes or images created from satellites orbiting the earth.        
    rift valleys Large fault zones in the eastern region of the African continent caused by shifting tectonic plates; long valleys surrounded by higher elevations or plateaus are created.        
    rift valleys Large fault zones in the eastern region of the African continent caused by shifting tectonic plates; long valleys surrounded by higher elevations or plateaus are created.        
    Rural-to-urban shift Trend that occurs when people migrate from a rural to an urban part of the same region in search of opportunities or advantages.        
    Rural-to-urban shift Trend that occurs when people migrate from a rural to an urban part of the same region in search of opportunities or advantages.        
    Russian Orthodoxy The doctrines and tenets of the Russian Orthodox Church.        
    Russian Orthodoxy The doctrines and tenets of the Russian Orthodox Church.        
    salinization The buildup of salts in soils that have been heavily irrigated over the years, typically in arid climates.        
    salinization The buildup of salts in soils that have been heavily irrigated over the years, typically in arid climates.        
    secular states A state with civil law based on democratic consensus or by vote that is not affiliated with any particular religion.        
    secular states A state with civil law based on democratic consensus or by vote that is not affiliated with any particular religion.        
    Senegambia Single political unit of Senegal and the Gambia from 1982 to 1989.        
    Senegambia Single political unit of Senegal and the Gambia from 1982 to 1989.        
    separatist movement A movement of people who wish to have greater political autonomy.        
    separatist movement A movement of people who wish to have greater political autonomy.        
    shatterbelt Region with political fracturing and splintering such as Eastern Europe.        
    shatterbelt Region with political fracturing and splintering such as Eastern Europe.        
    sheik An Arab chief.        
    sheik An Arab chief.        
    Shintoism Ethnic religion that is indigenous to Japan.        
    Shintoism Ethnic religion that is indigenous to Japan.        
    shock therapy The process of rapid privatization and the move to market capitalism after the Soviet Union’s collapse.        
    shock therapy The process of rapid privatization and the move to market capitalism after the Soviet Union’s collapse.        
    Silk Road Land route from China to Europe through the high mountains of Central Asia.        
    Silk Road Land route from China to Europe through the high mountains of Central Asia.        
    socialism An economic and political practice in which the government owns the means of economic production, distribution, and exchange. Socialism is thought to be a step on the path to Communism.        
    socialism An economic and political practice in which the government owns the means of economic production, distribution, and exchange. Socialism is thought to be a step on the path to Communism.        
    Solidarity Movement in Poland, led by Lech Wałęsa, to organize workers during the Cold War.        
    Solidarity Movement in Poland, led by Lech Wałęsa, to organize workers during the Cold War.        
    solstices Time of the year when the line of direct sunlight is either the farthest north or the farthest south and is directly over either the Tropic of Cancer or the Tropic of Capricorn.        
    solstices Time of the year when the line of direct sunlight is either the farthest north or the farthest south and is directly over either the Tropic of Cancer or the Tropic of Capricorn.        
    Soviet Socialist Republics The “states” within the Soviet Union.        
    Soviet Socialist Republics The “states” within the Soviet Union.        
    Soviet Union Also called the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), a country created in 1922, after the Russian Empire and the Russian Civil War and dissolved in 1991.        
    Soviet Union Also called the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), a country created in 1922, after the Russian Empire and the Russian Civil War and dissolved in 1991.        
    spatial diffusion The spread of any phenomenon, idea, disease, or concept through a population across space and through time.        
    spatial diffusion The spread of any phenomenon, idea, disease, or concept through a population across space and through time.        
    special economic zones (SEZs) Politically designated area where special economic rules or administrative policies are established to attract or encourage business and trade.        
    special economic zones (SEZs) Politically designated area where special economic rules or administrative policies are established to attract or encourage business and trade.        
    state capitalism When the state owns or controls the means of production but allows the free markets to determine supply and demand.        
    state capitalism When the state owns or controls the means of production but allows the free markets to determine supply and demand.        
    steppe Temperate grasslands in a semiarid region that does not receive enough rainfall for forests but is not dry enough to be a desert.        
    steppe Temperate grasslands in a semiarid region that does not receive enough rainfall for forests but is not dry enough to be a desert.        
    storm surge When water is pushed toward the hurricane’s center, it causes flooding when hitting landfall; usually the feature of a hurricane that produces the most damage or loss of life.        
    storm surge When water is pushed toward the hurricane’s center, it causes flooding when hitting landfall; usually the feature of a hurricane that produces the most damage or loss of life.        
    Subtropical Convergence Where the cold, dense waters of the Southern Ocean meet up with the warmer waters of the other oceans.        
    Subtropical Convergence Where the cold, dense waters of the Southern Ocean meet up with the warmer waters of the other oceans.        
    sultan A sovereign of a Muslim state.        
    sultan A sovereign of a Muslim state.        
    Sun Belt The region extending through the American South, Southwest, and into California.        
    Sun Belt The region extending through the American South, Southwest, and into California.        
    Supranationalism The voluntary association of three or more independent states willing to yield some measure of sovereignty for mutual benefit.        
    Supranationalism The voluntary association of three or more independent states willing to yield some measure of sovereignty for mutual benefit.        
    Taliban Militant Islamist group in Afghanistan that took control of the central government in 1996.        
    Taliban Militant Islamist group in Afghanistan that took control of the central government in 1996.        
    Taureg Nomadic ethnic group of the Sahara known for their indigo-colored clothing and use of camels for transportation.        
    Taureg Nomadic ethnic group of the Sahara known for their indigo-colored clothing and use of camels for transportation.        
    tectonic plates Separate sections of the earth’s crust that move independently and collide with each other, causing earthquakes and volcanic activity.        
    tectonic plates Separate sections of the earth’s crust that move independently and collide with each other, causing earthquakes and volcanic activity.        
    the troubles The term used in the United Kingdom for the political conflict in Northern Ireland.        
    the troubles The term used in the United Kingdom for the political conflict in Northern Ireland.        
    trade triangle Three-way trade agreement between Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia where each country contributes what it can provide and receives what the other countries have to offer.        
    trade triangle Three-way trade agreement between Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia where each country contributes what it can provide and receives what the other countries have to offer.        
    Trans-Siberian Railway Longest railway line in the world (completed 1916), connecting St. Petersburg in western Russia with Vladivostock in Russia’s Far East.        
    Trans-Siberian Railway Longest railway line in the world (completed 1916), connecting St. Petersburg in western Russia with Vladivostock in Russia’s Far East.        
    troposphere Layer of the earth’s atmosphere that extends from the surface of the earth to approximately six miles above the earth.        
    troposphere Layer of the earth’s atmosphere that extends from the surface of the earth to approximately six miles above the earth.        
    Tuareg Nomadic ethnic group of the Sahara known for its indigo-colored clothing and use of camels for transportation.        
    Tuareg Nomadic ethnic group of the Sahara known for its indigo-colored clothing and use of camels for transportation.        
    tundra Biome with short growing seasons and colder temperatures that is usually found in northern latitudes near the Arctic.        
    tundra Biome with short growing seasons and colder temperatures that is usually found in northern latitudes near the Arctic.        
    Turkestan Alternative term for the region of Central Asia named after the Turkish people who moved through the area centuries ago.        
    Turkestan Alternative term for the region of Central Asia named after the Turkish people who moved through the area centuries ago.        
    Type D (continental) climates Climate found in places far from oceans, with extremes of summer and winter temperatures and moderate precipitation.        
    Type D (continental) climates Climate found in places far from oceans, with extremes of summer and winter temperatures and moderate precipitation.        
    Vernacular regions Large area defined by boundaries based on people’s perceptions or thoughts.        
    Vernacular regions Large area defined by boundaries based on people’s perceptions or thoughts.        
    von Thünen model A model that seeks to predict agricultural land use in a closed economic system, with only one market surrounded by land of uniform quality.        
    von Thünen model A model that seeks to predict agricultural land use in a closed economic system, with only one market surrounded by land of uniform quality.        
    Wallace’s Line and Weber’s Line Imaginary lines drawn on a map through Indonesia demarcating the separation of plants and animals between the Asian realm and the Austral realm, which accounts for the uniqueness of the flora and fauna of Australia and New Zealand.        
    Wallace’s Line and Weber’s Line Imaginary lines drawn on a map through Indonesia demarcating the separation of plants and animals between the Asian realm and the Austral realm, which accounts for the uniqueness of the flora and fauna of Australia and New Zealand.        
    weapons of mass destruction (WMD) Chemical, nuclear, or biological weapons that could cause the deaths of innocent civilians on a massive scale.        
    weapons of mass destruction (WMD) Chemical, nuclear, or biological weapons that could cause the deaths of innocent civilians on a massive scale.        
    yurt A traditional, round, tent-like dwelling of nomadic people of Mongolia that can be disassembled and moved as the people migrate with their herds of livestock to new grazing areas.        
    yurt A traditional, round, tent-like dwelling of nomadic people of Mongolia that can be disassembled and moved as the people migrate with their herds of livestock to new grazing areas.        
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