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East Asia Vocabulary Words

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East Asia Vocabulary Words. Landfill – building on a dump; expanding land space to accommodate buildings . Pacific Rim – countries surrounding the Pacific Ocean. Ring of Fire: chain of volcanoes the line the Pacific Rim.

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Tsunami – giant ocean wave, caused by an underwater earthquake or volcanic eruption, with great destructive power


Economic Tiger – a nation that has rapid economic growth due to cheap labor, high technology, and aggressive exports. Countries are highly industrialized and trade with nations around the world.


Gobi Desert

*Located in northern

China and southeast


*Ideal place for finding

dinosaur fossils


Long hours – 14 hrs. a day

Low pay with little overtime

Employee abuse

Violation of child labor laws

Many are exposed to toxic chemicals

mongolia facts
Mongolia Facts
  • Majority of the people are Tibetan Buddhists
  • Parliamentary Republic
  • 6th largest country in Asia; 18th largest in the world
  • 1992 – a new Constitution was formed that recognized Mongolia as an independent, sovereign republic
  • Nearly half of the 2.7 million people live in the capital city
genghis khan
Genghis Khan

He rose from poverty and slavery to rule the world

genghis khan facts
Genghis Khan Facts
  • His father was the chief of a clan of nomadic Mongols
  • Given the name Temujin
  • Was a slave for around 5 years as a youngster
  • 1206 – confirmed as Chingis Khan (Genghis Khan), leader of all Mongolia
  • 1214 – with his 100,000 man army he conquered 50 million in China

By 1219 he ruled from northern China to the Afghanistan border, and Siberia to the border of Tibet

  • 1227 – Genghis Khan died
  • He revolutionized the social structure and reformed traditional law in Mongolia
  • He guaranteed freedom of religion and forbade the killing of priests, monks, nuns, and other holy people

Spheres of Influence – a method of dividing foreign control in China, after the country was forced to sign a series of treaties granting special privileges to the Europeans. China was partitioned for control by Britain, France, Germany, and Russia.

Box Rebellion – (1900) Chinese militants attacked and killed Europeans and Chinese Christians in China. A multinational force of about 20,000 soldiers defeated the Boxers.

china facts
China Facts
  • Name came from the Qin dynasty – 1st Emperor Qin Shi Huang
  • World’s longest continuously written language
  • Considered the longest continuous civilization
  • 4th largest country in the world – slightly smaller than the US
  • Largest population in the world – 1 in every 5 people in the world is Chinese (20%)
    • 4 times greater than the US
interesting facts
Interesting Facts
  • Ice cream was invented around 2000 B.C. when the Chinese packed a soft milk and rice mixture in the snow
  • Red is considered a lucky color
  • Invented the following:

Toilet paper Gun Powder

Paper 1st instrument for

Kites monitoring earthquakes

Compass Printing

Silk cloth 1st mechanical clock

Suspension bridges Water wheel to harvest



Chinese year is based on the cycles of the moon – complete cycle of the Chinese calendar takes 60 years.


Entire country is in 1 time zone

Produces 60% of the world’s mushrooms

One of the fastest growing economies in the world



A series of rulers from the same family

1st Chinese dynasty was the Shang

Qin dynasty gave its name to China


China is the leading producer of bicycles in the world.

China is the 2nd largest importer of goods in the world.


34 children are born every minute in China

  • China’s “1 child policy” has created a significant gender imbalance.
    • 32 million more boys than girls

Great Wall of China

*Known as the

“Long Wall”

*Extends around

5,500 miles

*A collection of walls

*1st set of walls

were built to keep

the Mongols out of



Receives thousands of tourists every day- 41.8 million visitors in 2004

Part of the wall is only 50 miles from Beijing


Major construction of the modern walls began in the Ming Dynasty.

During construction called “the longest cemetery on earth” because so many people died building it (more than 1 million)


Up to 25 feet high; 15-30 feet high at the base; 9-12 feet wide

Mortar to build the walls was from rice flour


Frontier guards, peasants, unemployed intellectuals, disgraced noblemen, and convicts were used to build the wall.


Longest man-made structure in the world.

President Nixon’s visit to the wall in 1972 increased tourism and sections of the wall were restored.


*Longest river in China – 3,915 miles in length

*World’s 3rd longest river

*Open to navigation all year long


Three Gorges Dam

World’s largest hydro-power project

Displace more than 1.2 million people

three gorges dam facts
Three Gorges Dam Facts
  • Located on the Yangtze (Chang Jiang) River
  • Construction began in 1993
  • China’s largest construction project since the Great Wall
  • World’s largest dam
  • Goal is to make Chongqing a major business center
  • Located about 1,500 miles inland from the ocean
positive effects of three gorges
Positive Effects of Three Gorges
  • Help control flooding which has killed millions of people and loss of crops
  • Generate 10% of China’s electrical power
  • Allow ships to sail further up the river to the interior of China (1,500 miles)
negative effects of three gorges
Negative Effects of Three Gorges
  • Over 1.2 million people were displaced – towns and villages were flooded
  • Habitat for many animals and birds were lost
  • Factories , mines, and waste dumps have been buried underwater – concern that chemicals might leak into the water
  • Corruption and shoddy construction have led to disasters at building projects – 40 killed in an incident in 1999
  • Chinese have been jailed for criticizing the dam

Population over 11 million

2nd largest city in China

Capital of the People’s Republic of China


Hosted the 2008 Olympics

Most expensive in history - $40 billion

problems facing china
Problems facing China
  • Farmers find it difficult to increase their income
  • Grain output has decreased
  • Unemployment high
  • 1 in 3 people breathe polluted air
  • Only 1/5 of daily waste is treated properly
  • Birth defects are on the rise

Walls are 32 feet high

There are 9,999 rooms (9 is a lucky number)

Larger than the Vatican and Kremlin combined

All of the buildings are made from painted wood

tiananmen square protest massacre
Tiananmen Square Protest / Massacre
  • Began on April 22, 1989 as a protest for continued economic reform and liberalization
  • Led mainly by students and intellectuals
  • Movement lasted 7 weeks
  • By May over 1 million protesters took part
  • On May 30 art students erected a 30-foot statue – Goddess of Democracy resembling the Statue of Liberty

On June 3 and 4 troops entered Tiananmen Square and opened fire

  • Exact number of deaths is unknown – reports of 3,000 protesters were killed
  • After the massacre, the government conducted widespread searches for suspected persons


Largest city in China – 8th largest in the world


Located on the banks of the Yangtze River Delta

Known as “Paris of the East” and “Queen of the Orient”

2004 – Time Magazine called Shanghai “The Most Happening City”


Park Hyatt Hotel is the tallest hotel in the world

2007 – Hosted the 1st Special Olympic Games ever held in Asia


Confucianism: belief in the importance of order, education, and hierarchy in a well-ordered society.

  • Chinese philosopher who lived from 551 to 479 B.C.
  • Believed in respect for the past for one’s ancestors
  • Thought children should obey their parents and parents should obey the government and emperor
  • Stressed the importance of education


*Gets its name from a book called the Tao-teChing

*More of a philosophy – believe in

the importance of harmony in

the individual, nature,

and in the universe

*Followers were persecuted

in China for years after the

Communist victory in

1949 and during the

cultural revolution


Believe the government should leave the people alone and have little involvement in their lives


Mao Tse-tung (Mao Zedong)

*Chinese communist


*Architect of the People’s

Republic of China (PRC)

*Led the Communist Party

against Chiang Kai-shek’s

Kuomintang in the

Chinese Civil War


Mao’s Great Leap Forward and Cultural Revolution is to blame for millions of deaths (40-50 million), causing famine and executions of the people.

mao tse tung
Mao Tse-tung
  • Translated name means “to shine on the east”
  • Was expelled from 3 schools
  • Believed that the greatest potential for revolution in China lies with the peasants
  • Organized peasant and worker guerrilla forces
  • After 1951, 1-3 million people are executed – purge of China
  • 1958 – Great Leap Forward: development of all sectors of the economy
    • Everyone is required to work in a commune


*Island country

*Has typhoons

*242 miles long

87 miles wide


taiwan facts
  • Located 100 miles east of South China
  • Nationalists fled to the island from China after being defeated by the communists
  • Population – 22.5 million
  • Democratic government
  • 2/3s of island is covered by forested peaks
  • Called
    • The IllhaFarmosa – “beautiful island”
    • Kingdom of the Corals

Trading Partners: US, Japan, and Hong Kong

  • About the size of Massachusetts
  • 1 of the most densely populated countries in the world – 2nd to Bangladesh
  • Religions: 90% practice a blend of Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism
  • Subtropical climate
  • Most speak Mandarin Chinese (Northern China)

*Manufacturer of electronics: computers, games, CD/DVDs

*Services 58.5%, Industry 36%, Agriculture 5.5%

*Less than 1% of the people live below the poverty line



Largest city in Taiwan

Highly densely populated

Asian capital for art and culture



*Means “source

of the sun”

*75% of Japan’s

people live in


*60% of the

people live on

2.7% of the



Land area is slightly smaller than California

Imports most natural resources

Japan is the largest consumer of Amazon rain forest timber

Imports 85% of Jamaica’s annual coffee production


Education is highly structured: attend school 6 days a week and shorter summer vacation than in America.


High speed bullet train

Tokyo has the most extensive urban railway network in the world

Sometimes trains are so crowded railway staff are employed to cram passengers inside

japan facts
Japan Facts
  • Parliamentary with constitutional monarchy
  • Population: 127,078,679
  • Japanese if the official language
  • Two major religions:
    • Shinto
    • Buddhism

Tokyo: Most densely populated metropolitan area in the world

City Population: 12,989,000

Metropolitan Area: 35-39 million


Japan has the 7th largest population in the world.

60% of the people smoke.

Crime rate in Japan among the lowest in the world.


Samurai - professional soldier in Japan who served the interests of landowners and clan chiefs


Korean Peninsula

First occupied by people who migrated from the northwestern regions of Asia

Has been invaded and fought over by its larger neighbors – China, Japan, and Russia


North Korea

About the size of Mississippi

Democratic People’s Republic of Korea



Ruled by the Kim Jong Il


Population: 24.05 million

63% live in urban areas


Posses nuclear weapons

All members of the People’s Assembly belong to the Worker’s Party

Population – 22.7 million

Official language is Korean


South Korea

Has nearly

3,000 islands

Terrain is mostly rugged and mountainous

Known as –



Land of the




Population – 49+ million

Korean is main language

English taught in schools



City population – 10.2


98% of population are



3rd largest mega-city in the world

One of the safest cities in the world – little crime


Began in 1950

Fight was over unification of both countries

North Korea was aided by China and the Soviet Union


The war lasted until 1953 (3 years) until an armistice was signed

No real victory on either side

A Korean Demilitarized Zone was established

2.5 million civilians lost their lives

1+ million soldiers lost their lives


North Korea is above the 38th parallel

South Korea is below the 38th parallel