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CHAPTER 6

The North African/Southwest Asian Realm

QuestionAnswer
Cultural geography The wide-ranging and comprehensive field of geography that studies spatial aspects of human cultures.
Culture hearth Heartland, source area, or innovation center; place of origin of a major culture.
Cultural diffusion The process of spreading and adopting a cultural element from its place of origin across a wider area.
Cultural landscape The forms and artifacts sequentially placed on the natural landscape by the activities of various human occupants.
Hydraulic civilization theory The theory that cities which managed to control irrigated farming over large hinterlands held political power over other cities.
Spatial diffusion The spatial spreading or dissemination of a culture element (such as a technological innovation) or some other phenomenon (e.g., a disease outbreak).
Expansion diffusion The spreading of an innovation or an idea through a fixed population in such a way that the number of those adopting it grows continuously larger, resulting in an expanding area of dissemination.
Relocation diffusion Sequential diffusion process in which the items being diffused are transmitted by their carrier agents as they relocate to new areas. The most common form of relocation diffusion involves the spreading of innovations by a migrating population.
Stateless nation A national group that aspires to become a an independent state but lacks the territorial means to do so.
Choke point A narrowing of an international waterway causing marine-traffic congestion, requiring reduced speeds and/or sharp turns, and increasing the risk of collision as well as vulnerability to attack.
Fragmented modernization A checkerboard-like spatial pattern of modernization in an emerging-market economy wherein a few localized regions of a country experience most of the development while the rest are largely unaffected.
Desalination The process of removing dissolved salts from water, thereby producing fresh (drinking) water from seawater or brackish water.
Domino effect The belief that political destabilization in one state can result in the collapse of order in a neighboring state, triggering a chain of events that, in turn, can affect a series of contiguous states.
Religious revivalism Religious movement whose objectives are to return to the foundations of that faith and to influence state policy. Often called religious fundamentalism; but in the case of Islam, Muslims prefer the term revivalism.
Jihad A doctrine within Islam. Commonly translated as holy war, it entails a personal or collective struggle on the part of Muslims to live up to the religious standards prescribed by the Quran (Koran).
Insurgent state Territorial embodiment of a successful guerrilla movement. The establishment by antigovernment insurgents of a territorial base in which they exercise full control; thus a state within a state.
Caliphate An imperial-scale Islamic government led by a caliph, considered a direct successor to the Prophet Muhammad, who rules and exerts moral authority over Muslims worldwide.
Basin irrigation Farming technique devised by ancient Egyptians to trap the Nile’s annual floodwaters and their fertile silt by building fields with earthen ridges.
Externality effect A negative consequence of an action, which countries try to minimize. Ethiopia’s new dam on the Blue Nile is deliberately situated just upstream from the Sudan border in order to minimize reduced water flow and silt entrapment within Ethiopian territory.
Megacity Informal term referring to the world’s most heavily populated cities; in this book, the term refers to a metropolis containing a population of greater than 10 million.
Turkish Model In the wake of the regime changes in the North Africa/Southwest Asia realm brought about by the “Arab Spring” of 2011, moderates have cited Turkey as the best model of democratic governance for this part of the world.
Sovereign wealth fund Pt Saudi Arabia’s plan for a new economic future as an industrial power rather than an oil producer. U.S. $2 tri fund to b created by selling pre-owned oil assets to private companies will provide a big part of the financing for the transformation of eco
Rain shadow effect The relative dryness in areas downwind of mountain ranges resulting from orographic precipitation, wherein moist air masses are forced to deposit most of their water content as they cross the highlands.
Islamic Front The southern border of the African Transition Zone that marks the religious frontier of the Muslim faith in its southward penetration of Subsaharan Africa (see Fig. 6-21).
Failed state A country whose institutions have collapsed and in which anarchy prevails.
Environmental determinism A geographic school of thought, popular in the first quarter of the twentieth century, that maintains the physical environment determines human behavior and/or social outcomes.
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