South Asia: The Cultural Geography
Scooby Snacks • Question 1 : What is the population of South Asia and what percentage of the worlds population live here? • Answer 1 : • Question 2: What is the capital city of Bangladesh? • Answer 2: • Question 3: What famous architectural tomb is located in Agra, India? • Answer 3:
The Culture: Varied Characteristics • South Asia’s most significant fact: A population of over 1.4 billion people! • Remember, . . . This is 1/5thof the entire world population. • Diversity: • Mix of religious, social, cultural influences. • Speak hundreds of languages and practice several religions.
Regional Characteristics • India: • The Dravidians: Largest number of Indian descendants. • Traditionally identify by religion: As Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, etc. • Jati: a group that defines one’s occuptation and social position. • Pakistan and Bangladesh: • Once part of British India. • More than 90% of the people here practice Islam. • Bengali: Ethnic group in Bangladesh with Hindu practices.
Regional Characteristics: Sri Lanka, Bhutan, and Nepal • Sri Lanka: 2 main groups. • The Buddhist Sinhalese: The majority group that controls the government. • The Hindu Tamils: Have been fighting for independence since the 1980s. • Violence has disrupted the economy and people of the region. • Bhutan and Nepal: • Mongolian ancestors: Differ in appearance from other South Asians. • Sherpas of Nepal: Most notable people from Nepal who are great mountaineers.
Population Density and Distribution: Regional Variation • Population density is generally high throughout South Asia. • Factors that contribute to population growth: • Climate, vegetation, and physical features. • Highest concentrations of population are found on the Ganges Plain and the monsoon water coast of India. • Bangladesh: • 2ndmost densely populated country of South Asia. • 1991: The average female gave birth to 4 children in her lifetime.
Urban and Rural Life • Rural Life: • They farm, live in villages, and struggle to grow food for their families. • Nomadic and seminomadic groups. • Herd camels, goats, or yaks for a living. • Growing Urbanization: • Recent years: People are starting to move into cities for the hope of better jobs and wages. • South Asian Cities: • Mumbai: India’s main port city and largest city. • Kolkata (Calcutta): Thriving port on the Ganges River. • The center of India’s steel and iron production. • Delhi: India’s third largest city. • Megalopolis: Chain of closely linked metropolitan areas.
History and Government • Earliest South Asians left few written records. • The Indus Valley Civilization: • Arouse around 2500 B.C. • Developed a writing system, strong central government, thriving overseas trade. • Worlds first cities: Mohenjo Daro and Harappa. • Cities most likely destroyed by flooding or drought as the Indus River changed its course.
The Aryans • The Aryans took over after the Indus Valley Civilization crumbled. • Vedas: Sacred writings that revealed Aryan ideas about religion and social structure. • Society as 4 groups: • Priests. • Warriors (nobles). • Artisans and farmers. • Enslaved people. • Caste System: Dictates social rank at birth.
Two Great Religions: Hinduism & Buddhism • Hinduism: • Dharma: Moral Duty. • Reincarnation: Rebirth as another living being. • Karma: Actions in accordance with one’s Dharma. • Here. . . Let me explain this. • Buddhism: • Siddhartha Gautama: Years of meditation and spiritual seeking earned him the name, Buddha. • Nirvana: If one follows the Buddhist teaching, they will eventually become enlightened by entering a state of insight.
South Asia: A Vast History • Mauryan Empire: • First people to maintain control after the Aryans. • Ruled all but the southernmost part of the Indian subcontinent. • Gupta Empire: • This Hindu civilization was one of the most advanced in the world. • Arabic numerals developed during the Gupta period. • Mogul Empire: • Islamic empire with a diverse ancestry. • Mongolia, Turkey, and Persia. • British Empire in India: • European invaders came by sea. • British raj: The Hindi word for empire.
India: Independence & Modernity • Mohandas K. Gandhi: • India’s fight for Independence was demonstrated through nonviolent tactics: Boycotting British goods & peace demonstrations. • India: • Often called the worlds largest democracy. • Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh: • Parliamentary republic. • Bhutan & Nepal: • Traditional style monarchies.
Languages • Indo-European Languages: • Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Northern India: • Official languages rooted in Indo-European languages. • India = Hindu. • Bangladesh = Bengali. • Pakistan = Urdu. • Other Languages: • Southern India and Sri Lanka: • Speak languages of the Dravidian family.
Quality of Life • Health: • Life expectancy lower than developed countries. • HIV & AIDS: 2nd highest rates in the world. • Scarcity of clean drinking water. • Food: • Poor nutrition is a problem. • 1/3rdof population too poor to buy quality foods. • Muslims – cannot eat pork. • Hindus – cannot eat beef. • Education: • South Asian standard of living should rise with educational opportunity. • Committed to raising literacy rates. • Extending educational opportunities to females.
Activity For the following activity, you will be given a review sheet on chapter 24. Do your BEST to complete the sheet before the end of the period. You may also work with a partner. NOW, I WANT YOU! . . . TO START YOUR WORK.