The Cultural Geography of South Asia Mr. Marston Dominion Christian High School Geography 2009
Human Characteristics • 1/5 of earth’s population lives in South Asia (1.4 Billion people) • Diverse: Religious, Cultural, Social, linguistic
India’s Population • A. Descendants of Dravidians • B. Aryans: invaders from Central Asia • C. Descendants of British and Portuguese colonists • D. Refugees from Tibet and Sri Lanka
India’s Religions • Hinduism Jati: a group that defines one’s occupation and social position • Islam • Buddhism • Sikhs • Jainism • Christianity
Pakistan and Bangladesh • Islamic heritage • 90% are practicing Muslims • Culturally diverse in Pakistan • Culturally monolithic in Bangladesh (Bengali)
Sri Lanka • Sinhalese: Buddhist majority and control the government • Tamils: Hindus. • Over 100,000 Sri Lankans have died since 1984 and one million people displaced from their homes
Bhutan and Nepal • Ancestors from Mongolia • Bhutan: Bhote and Tibetan ancestry • Nepal: famous ethnic group is the Sherpas.
Population Density and Distribution • 814 per sq. mile: 7 times the world’s average • South Asia will double its current population by 2050.
Regional Variation • Climate, vegetation, and physical features have an impact on the number of people the land can support • Population decreases as the elevation increases. • Most people live in the Ganges Plain and along the Indian coast
Living • People live where their food supply can be grown (Rice) • Live near jobs: tea and rubber plantations
Bangladesh • Second most densely populated country in South Asia • Has difficulty feeding its population • Very poor
Urban and Rural Life • Most South Asians live in the country • They farm, live in villages, and are subsistence farmers • South Asia is home to nomadic or semi-nomadic groups.
Growing Urbanization • Over time, more people have moved to cities in hopes of better jobs and higher wages. • People strain the public resources and facilities (schools and hospitals) • Problems: Housing, Overcrowding, Pollution
South Asia’s cities • Mumbai (Bombay) 18.1 million people • Kolkata (Calcutta): center of India’s iron and steel industries • Delhi: • Dhaka, Bangladesh: world’s second most densely populated urban area. • Karachi, Pakistan • Megapolis: chain of closely linked metropolitan areas.