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Lecture 3

Geography 1HB3 - Lecture 3 Basic Concepts I.docx

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Walter Peace

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Thursday, January-12-12
Human Geography
Lecture 3
Basic Concepts of Human Geography
Similarity and Difference in Space: Regions
- “no two places on earth can be exactly the same” (p 22)
o Different absolute locations
o Different physical and cultural characteristics
Place A is not the same as place B
- Despite uniqueness of places, it is still possible to generalize about spatial regularities
- Region: an area of the earth’s surface featuring internal uniformity while differing from
surrounding areas
Region: “any earth area with distinctive and unifying physical or cultural characteristics that (distinguish
it) from surrounding areas” (p. 471)
- regions are devices of areal generalization focused on key unifying elements or similarities of
the area being studies
- example region of Canada
o Atlantic Canada
o Industrial Heartland
o Western Canada
o British Columbia
o Near North
o Far North
- What are the ‘distinctive and unifying characteristics” of each of these regions?
Types of Regions:
- Formal (uniform region): an area of essential uniformity in one or a limited combination of
physical or cultural features
o Bound by political boundaries, i.e. Province of Ontario
- Functional (nodal) region: an area as a spatial system where the parts are interdependent,
operating as a dynamic, organizational unit
o How the region functions as a spatial system
o i.e. commutershed of Metro Toronto can have a map of commutershed (how far
people commute, etc.)
- Perceptual region: ‘perceived’ areas that are meaningful to those who recognize them
o E.g. ethnic/cultural areas in cities
o Not formal or functional, they are perceived.
o i.e. Chinatown, little Italy)
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