South Asia Chap 25 & 26 Unit 8
I. Natural Environment of India The Ganges at night
A. Physical Characteristics of South Asia • South Asia is a subcontinent – large landmass that forms distinct part of a continent • Himalayas • separate South Asia from the rest of Asia • Highest mts in the world – includes more than 30 of world’s highest mts – often referred to as the “rooftop of the world” • Mt. Everest highest mt in world at 29,000+ ft.
d. They are covered in snow all year long. Some of the snow melts in the spring. The water runs off the mountains, creating rivers. e. Relatively young mts – have not eroded much – continue to shift, move, rise - Contains some of world’s largest glaciers – thus, India contains the world’s largest body of ice outside subpolar regions.
3. Three Great Rivers of South Asia a. Indus - rises in the snowy mts of the Himalayas & flows down to the hot, dry lands below. - Every spring, the mt. snows melted & the river flooded. When the water drained away, it left behind a rich mud (alluvial soil). This was good for planting crops. - Today the river is controlled by dams and canals.
Ganges - headwaters in Himalayas - Functions of the Ganges: • Drinking water & fish • Irrigate crops • Trade & transportation route - Hinduism’s holy river • Goddess Ganga • Healing powers • Many temples along its banks • Ghats lead down to the water
Brahmaputra - source is Himalayas - flows from SW Tibet, China, through India, into Bangladesh, where it empties into the Bay of Bengal - not navigable between the mountains of Tibet and the plains of India. - In its lower course, the river is both a creator and a destroyer— depositing huge quantities of fertile alluvial soil but also causing disastrous and frequent floods.
Ghats a. two mountain ranges forming the eastern and western edges of the Deccan plateau of peninsular India b. In Hindi ghat means “river landing stairs” or “mountain pass” c. Western Ghats receive heavy rain from summer monsoons
B. Climates of South Asia • Altitude and distance from the Indian Ocean affect climates in South Asia. • Monsoons are important - carry moisture from SW in summer - blow dry from NE in winter
Tropical wet covers parts of India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. • Tropical wet and dry extends over parts of India and northern Sri Lanka. • Humid subtropical stretches over northern India. • Arid and Semiarid cover much of Pakistan and Afghanistan and parts of India. • Highlands lies in a thin ribbon in the north along the Himalayas.
C. Ecosystems of South Asia • South Asia’s size and varied elevations and landforms give the region a wide range of ecosystems • Tropical grassland stretches over most of India. • Tropical rain forest extends over Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and parts of southern and western India. • Temperate grassland lies in most of Afghanistan and parts of Pakistan. • Desert scrub covers parts of Pakistan and India. • Vegetation varies with altitude in the Himalayas. • Poaching & loss of habitat are serious threats to many animals
A. Historical Overview of South Asia 1. 2500-1500 BC : Indus Valley Civilization Flourished • One of the world’s oldest civilizations The people of the Indus Valley civilization carved words and pictures on soapstone seals. The seals are now in the National Museum of India in New Delhi.
Religions and Ancient Empires a. 1500 BC + - Aryans from C. Asia settle in N. India - use Sanskrit. Modern Hindi developed from Sanskrit - Hinduism was the 1st religion to emerge in S. Asia. pantheon (all the gods) Social Class System: Caste
Varna (Social Hierarchy) Brahmins Kshatriyas Vaishyas Shudras Pariahs [Harijan] Untouchables
b. 500 BC: Buddhism, derived from Hinduism, is founded in India (Siddhartha Gautama). c. Invaders from Central Asia & Afghanistan founded and conquered empires here. Map showing Mahāyāna Buddhism in Asia today
Muslim Dominance a. 700s AD: Arab conquerors brought Islam to the area now known as Pakistan b. By 1206 AD: Muslim invaders established sultanate in Delhi (India) c. The Mughal Empire controlled most of S. Asia by the 1600s - The Mughals were Muslim, but they allowed the majority Hindu population into their power structure
The Taj Mahal • built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahān (reigned 1628–58) to immortalize his wife Mumtaz who died in childbirth (14th child!) in 1631 • considered the finest example of Mughal architecture. • In 1983, the Taj Mahal became a UNESCO World Heritage Site
British Imperialism a. 1618 AD: English East India Company (a company, not a gov’t!!) set up trading posts along coast of India - It had a fleet of 130 twelve hundred ton ships - commanded an army of 200,000 troops that came to dominate the Indian subcontinent. - funded governments, toppled princes - generated spectacular amounts of money from trading textiles and spices. - The East India Company, founded in 1600, lasted for 258 years before the British state gained full control of its activities. b. built colonial empire across S. Asia – only Afghanistan remained independent
c. British in India • Despotic and corrupt Mogul Empire in India ignores British gains • British soon control India • Export cotton from India to Britain • Machine cotton spinning in Britain starts industrial revolution • India’s successful textile industry destroyed – see next slide
d. Benefits of British Colonization • Infrastructure! Brits constructed RRs, telegraphs, dams, bridges, ports, and irrigation canals • Sanitation and health improved • Schools improved (infrastructure) • English language, system of law, gov’t
e. Problems w/ Colonization • British had all the power - best positions in gov’t & military • Cash crops led to a dependency on the British • Famines in the late 1800’s
Resistance and Independence • Resistance to British Rule • 1885: Indian National Congress formed to protest British rule • 1906: Muslim League formed to represent Muslim minority • Mohandas Gandhi • Beginning in 1920s, used nonviolent civil disobedience to protest British rule. Boycotts and peaceful demonstrations were especially effective • Independence in 1947 • India divided due to tensions btwn Hindus & Muslims. India had majority Hindu population; West & East Pakistan had majority Muslim population • East Pakistan gains independence from West Pakistan and becomes Bangladesh in 1972. • Most S. Asian countries were non-aligned during Cold War • India is currently the world’s largest democracy
India’s Economy 1. Agriculture – the basis of India’s economy a. 25% of GDP b. Farms = 50% land area c. Labor force by occupation 60% ag 12% industry 28% services c . Major crops: rice, wheat, tea, sugar cane, sorghum
d. ½ of all farms are small (less than 2.5 acres) - land divided up among sons so, become smaller and less profitable e. Much ag depends on summer monsoons - increased gov’t efforts to develop new ag techniques
2. The Green Revolution (1967-1978) a. 3 main goals 1) cultivated land 2) harvest 2 crops/yr 3) yield w/ better seeds b. Food production thanks to irrigation projects c. Negatives? - irrigation projects/dams displace people & disrupt environment - more use of pesticides/fertilizers - not affordable for all - not possible in water-starved areas
3. Industry a. India’s industrial production = top 10, but GDP per capita is very low. b. Cottage industries thrive in India - especially important for women c. Major exports - textiles, jute, some steel d. Industrial challenges - need increased power supply - need to expand infrastructure to attract foreign investment
e. Importance of high-tech industry - ex. Bangalore - leads to a growing middle class
B. Cities & Villages 1. Urbanization a. 29% Urban (CIA Factfile) b. Cities growing 2X faster than small towns c. Largest cities - Mumbai (Bombay) - Kolkata (Calcutta)
2. City Life a. Crowded, noisy, smog, traffic etc. b. Variety of jobs: factories, offices c. More opportunities for women d. Class divisions - rich biz people/landowners - growing middle class - most in poverty Bombay Slums
e. India’s major cities 1) Mumbai (Bombay) (18 m +) - home to Bollywood 2) Kolkata (Calcutta) (12 m +) - busy seaport - City of Joy 3) Delhi (New & Old) - New = National capital 4) Chennai (Madras) - SE Coast 5) Varanasi - on the Ganges - holy city for Hindus Varanasi
3. Village Life a. Traditional - limited infrastructure - poor sanitation - lack drinking water - poor health care - illiteracy b. Large families - for farms - Hindus & Muslims value lrg families - try to have at least 2 boys as girls become property of husband’s family at marriage
The Bindi • The bindi or tikka on the forehead used to signify a married woman, but today it is a beauty mark worn by married and unmarried alike. It can be of any color, size, shape and there can be more than one. Philosophically, it represents the third eye of Shiva, the portal of intuition leading directly to the brain. Indian society long ago recognized that women usually have the edge when it comes in to intuition and they wear it routinely while men usually only wear it to the temple. • The red in the hair however, means the woman is married.
C. Challenges • Intro a. South Asia is one of the most densely populated areas on earth b. India has a population growth rate of 1.548 %, which will lead to the doubling of the nation’s population in 36 years. c. Current population of India: 1,166,079,217 (July 2009 est.) - the gov’t attempts to address the overpopulation issue with various programs - unsuccessful
2. Population & Poverty a. See population statistics - Population growth b/c of improved health care and sanitation b. Large population overwhelms transp. & communications network c. Lack of education opportunities