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Chapter 21. Southeast Asia. Southeast Asia . Large as the continental US Population centers around rivers More than half the population lives on islands Part of the “ Ring of Fire” earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis are common

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Chapter 21

Chapter 21

Southeast Asia

Southeast asia
Southeast Asia

  • Large as the continental US

  • Population centers around rivers

  • More than half the population lives on islands

  • Part of the “Ring of Fire”

    • earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis are common

  • Life is regulated by the climate- monsoons to droughts

  • Developing into an economic power, but poverty and political instability cause issue

  • Divided into two major sub regions

    • Indochina

    • Malay archipelago

I indochina
I. Indochina

  • Named for dominant powers on either side: China and India

    • Exert strong influence on the culture, politics and economy of the region

  • Made up of:

    • Myanmar

    • Thailand

    • Laos

    • Cambodia

    • Vietnam


  • Formerly known as Burma

    • Changed in 1989 by ruling military junta, still contested

    • UN and others recognize Myanmar, US still uses Burma

  • Largest country in Indochina- slightly smaller than Texas

  • Most people live along the rain forest

  • Capital: Yangon

  • Irrawaddy River- runs from uplands to the Andaman Sea, main river in Myanmar

  • 89% are Buddhists, only 4% profess Christianity

  • Was once the richest country in the southeast, but adopted socialist economic practices that held them back


  • Known as Siam until 1939

  • Only country in Southeast Asia to never be controlled by a European power

  • Strongest economy in Indochina

  • Bangkok: capital city

  • Much of the territory is on the Malay Peninsula- almost 1000 miles long-control central portion

  • Constitutional monarchy- prime minister is head of government, but have a traditional king

  • 94% Buddhists

  • Elephants are the national symbol pg 527


  • Only landlocked country in Southeast Asia

  • Undeveloped, mountainous, lack of arable land

  • 60% Buddhist, 40% animist or other native religion

  • Mekong River borders with Thailand

  • Capital: Vientiane- still shows French influence

  • In 1975, Pathet Lao, a communist organization, took over and modeled it after Vietnam

  • Recently tried to move back to a free market economy—but lack of infrastructure is hindering

    • No railroads, little telecommunications, poor road system, only urban areas have electricity


  • Pg. 526

  • Off shoot of Hinduism

  • Based on teaching of Siddhartha Gautama Buddha

  • Dharma- saving truth- balance between self indulgence and self torture

  • 4 Noble Truths and 8 Fold Path of Moral Principles

    • 1. Right View 2. Right Intention 3. Right Speech 4. Right Action 5. Right Livelihood 6. Right Effort 7. Right Mindfulness 8. Right Concentration

  • Nirvana- state of happiness and rest

  • Seek the “non self”


  • Has great potential, but never took advantage of it

  • Low, flat plains, much of the land is arable

  • Gained independence from France in 1953

  • The communist Khmer Rouge took over in 1975 and tried to erase memories of colonial rule and return to a rural, agricultural lifestyle

    • Tried to rid of all opposition, killed 1.5 million Cambodians

    • Communists in Vietnam were appalled, they invaded in 1978

    • Khmer Rouge finally surrendered in 99 and were put on trial by the UN

  • Today, country has a king and a bicameral legislature

  • Future is bright, GDP is equally divided by agriculture, industry and service and 50% of the population is 20 years old and under


  • Capital: Hanoi

  • Southern coast along the South China Sea

  • Largest city in the south: Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon)

    • Communist Ho Chi Minh led rebels against the French to gain independence

    • Not all Vietnamese wanted Communism, South voted to remain free

    • UN split the country at the 17th parallel, North and South Vietnam

    • Afraid of the Domino Theory (once one country falls to communism, more will follow) the US went in to help the South fight off the Viet Cong

    • Too divisive of a battle, US left, South fell, people fled the country

    • Working on expanding economy, still has Communist government

  • Culture is a mix of Western and Oriental influences

  • 80% profess no religion at all

Ii the malay archipelago
II. The Malay Archipelago

  • Largest group of islands in the world

  • Most islands are volcanic, dominated by mountains


  • Part on the Malay Peninsula, rest is on the island of Borneo

  • Major leader among developing countries

  • Capital: Kuala Lumpur- on the peninsula

  • 60% are Muslim

  • Official language: BahasaMelayu, but English and Chinese are common

  • In the 70s became a major electronics manufacturer

  • Batik- hand crafted cloth, part of traditional clothing


  • Only about 3x the size of D.C., but very influential

  • Singapore—name of island, country and capital

  • Has the busiest seaport by volume in the world

  • 77% Chinese population, religiously Buddhist and Muslim

  • Financial and high-tech hub of Southeast Asia


  • On the island of Borneo, wedged between two states of Malaysia

  • Gained independence from Britain in 1984

  • Government: Constitutional Sultanate

    • Legal system based on British law, but Islamic sharia supersedes it in some areas

    • Sultan and prime minister- hereditary positions, no elections

  • Islam is official religion

  • Capital: Bandar Seri Begawan


  • Largest country of Southeast Asia

  • Nation made up of 17,508 islands!

    • Only 6600 are populated, Stretch across 3000 miles

  • 4th largest population in the world

    • Largest Islamic nation in the world

  • Big Islands of Indonesia

    • Java- hub of activity, capital Jakarta is here

    • Sumatra- second most densely populated island

    • Borneo- 3rd largest island in the world

    • New Guinea- 2nd largest island in the world

The philippines
The Philippines

  • Chain of 7,107 islands that run 1000 miles

    • Only about 900 islands are inhabited

  • Two big islands on either end: Luzon and Mindanao

  • Luzon

    • Largest and most populous island

    • Capital: Manila

  • Discovered by Ferdinand Magellan and was a Spanish colony until 1898, full independence after WWII

    • 80% Roman Catholic