Geography as a Discipline


  • The term geography was first coined by Eratosthenese, a Greek scholar (276-194 BC.).
  • The word has been derived from two roots from Greek language geo (earth) and graphos (description)
  • A geographer explains the phenomena in a frame of cause and effect relationship
  • The geographical phenomena, both the physical and human, are not static but highly dynamic
  • Present societies have modified their natural environment by inventing and using technology and thus, have expanded the horizon of their operation by appropriating and utilising the resources provided by nature.
  • we now find humanised nature and naturalised human beings and  geography studies this interactive relationship
  • The present world is being perceived as a global village
  • Every geographical phenomenon undergoes change through time and can be explained temporally
  •  It is for this reason, time is an integral part of geographical studies as the fourth dimension
 
 
Physical Geography and Natural Sciences
  • The traditional physical geography is linked with geology, meteorology, hydrology and pedology, and thus, geomorphology, climatology, oceanography and soil geography respectively have very close link with the natural sciences as these derive their data from these sciences.
  • Bio-Geography is closely related to botany, zoology as well as ecology as human beings are located in different locational niche
 
Geography and Social Sciences
  • All the social science disciplines, viz. sociology, political science, economics and demography study different aspects of social reality.
  • The branches of geography, viz. social, political, economic and population and settlements are closely linked with these disciplines as each one of them has spatial attributes
 
 
BRANCHES OF GEOGRAPHY
  • The major approaches to study geography have been
    1. Systematic
    2. Regional
  • The systematic geography approach is the same as that of general geography.
  • This approach was introduced by Alexander Von Humboldt, a German geographer (1769-1859)
  • Regional geography approach was developed by another German geographer Karl Ritter (1779-1859)
  • Dualism is one of the main characteristics of geography which got introduced from the very beginning.
  • Earlier scholars laid emphasis on physical geography.
  • But human beings are an integral part of the earth’s surface. They are part and parcel of nature.
 
Physical Geography
  1. Geomorphology
  2. Climatology
  3. Hydrology – water over the surface
  4. Pedology – Soil Geography
 
Human Geography
  1. Social/Cultural Geography
  2. Population and Settlement Geography
  3. Economic Geography
  4. Historical Geography
  5. Political Geography
 
Biogeography
  1. Plant Geography
  2. Zoo Geography
  3. Ecology /Ecosystem – study of the habitats characteristic of species
  4. Environmental Geography
 
 
PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY AND ITS IMPORTANCE
  • Lithosphere (landforms, drainage, relief and physiography),
  • Atmosphere (its composition, structure, elements and controls of weather and climate; temperature, pressure, winds, precipitation, climatic types, etc.),
  • Hydrosphere (oceans, seas, lakes and associated features with water realm)
  • Biosphere ( life forms including human being and macro-organism and their sustaining mechanism)
 
 

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