Chapter 7 – Mexico Video Section Notes Impact of Emigration Physical Geography History and Culture Mexico Today Maps Mexico: Political Mexico: Physical Mexico: Climate Mexico’s Culture Regions Mexico Quick Facts Chapter 7 Visual Summary Images Culture Early Cultures of Mexico Hidalgo Calls for Independence Focus on Culture: Day of the Dead
Physical Geography • The Big Idea • Mexico is a large country with different natural environments in its northern, central, and southern regions. • Main Ideas • Mexico’s physical features include plateaus, mountains, and coastal lowlands. • Mexico’s climate and vegetation include deserts, tropical forests, and cool highlands. • Key natural resources in Mexico include oil, silver, gold, and scenic landscapes.
Mexico shares a long border with the southern United States. The Río Bravo, called the Rio Grande in the U.S., runs along part of this border. The Río Bravo is one of Mexico’s few major rivers. Main Idea 1:Mexico’s physical features include plateaus, mountains, and coastal lowlands.
Mexico’s Physical Features • Bordered by the Pacific Ocean in the West and the Gulf of Mexico in the east • Stretching south from northern Mexico is a peninsula, or piece of land surrounded by water on three sides, called Baja California. • The Yucatán Peninsula separates the Gulf of Mexico from the Caribbean Sea. Bodies Of Water • Much of interior is a region called the Mexican Plateau. • Two mountain ranges, the Sierra Madre Oriental in the east and the Sierra Madre Occidental in the west, are part of the Sierra Madre, or “mother range.” • The Valley of Mexico, where Mexico City is located, lies between these two ranges in the south. • The mountains south of Mexico City include volcanoes. Volcanic eruptions and earthquakes are a threat to that region. Plateaus And Mountains
The land slopes down to the coast from highlands in central Mexico. The Gulf coastal plain is wide and flat. This region has good soils and climate for farming. The Yucatán Peninsula is mostly flat. Erosion of limestone created caves and sinkholes that are often filled with water. Coastal Lowlands
Main Idea 2:Mexico’s climate and vegetation include deserts, tropical forests, and cool highlands. • The great variety of climates produces different vegetation. • Changes in elevation cause climates to vary within short distances. • The Mexican Plateau can have cool temperatures. • The southern coastal areas have warm temperatures and summer rainy seasons that support tropical forests that cover 25 percent of Mexico. • The climate in the Yucatán Peninsula is hot and dry, supporting scrub forest. • Most of northern Mexico is dry and made up of deserts and grasslands.
Mexico has rich natural resources. The southern and coastal plains and the Gulf of Mexico have oil. Mexico’s mines yield gold, silver, copper, lead, and zinc. Mexico produces more silver than any other country in the world. Main Idea 3: Key natural resources in Mexico include oil, silver, gold, and scenic landscapes.
History and Culture • The Big Idea • Native American cultures and Spanish colonization shaped Mexican history and culture. • Main Ideas • Early cultures of Mexico included the Olmec, the Maya, and the Aztec. • Mexico’s period as a Spanish colony and its struggles since independence have shaped its culture. • Spanish and native cultures have influenced Mexico’s customs and traditions today.
People came to Mexico many thousands of years ago. As early as 5,000 years ago, they were growing beans, peppers, squash, and domesticated corn. Farming allowed people to build the first settlements in America. Main Idea 1:Early cultures of Mexico included the Olmec, the Maya, and the Aztec.
Three Civilizations • Olmec • Lived in small villages by about 1500 BC • Settled in the southern coast of the Gulf of Mexico • Built temples and giant statues • Maya • Built big cities in Mexico and Central America between AD 250 and 900 • Built stone temples • Developed a calendar • Kept written records that do not reveal the reason for their collapse • Aztec • Moved in from the north • Built a great capital on an island in 1325 • Established an empire, a land with different territories and peoples under one ruler • Obtained new lands, taxes, and captives to sacrifice through war
Despite great size and power, the Aztec empire did not last long after Hernán Cortés arrived with 600 Spanish soldiers. The Spanish had better weapons and horses. The Spanish brought new diseases, such as smallpox, which killed many Aztecs. Cortés conquered the empire by 1521. Main Idea 2: Mexico’s period as a Spanish colony and its struggles since independence have shaped its culture.
Culture After the conquest, the separate peoples and cultures mixed. Mestizos are people of mixed European and American Indian ancestry. Mulattoes are people of mixed European and African descent. Africans and American Indians also intermarried. Religion The Roman Catholic Church had great influence. The church ruled over large areas of northern Mexico. The church established missions, or church outposts. Priests learned native languages and converted the American Indians to Catholicism. Colonial Times
The Spaniards searched for gold and silver. The American Indians and the enslaved Africans labored in the mines. As a result, many died from overwork and disease. The Spanish monarch granted haciendas, or huge expanses of farm or ranch land, to some Spanish people who became wealthy. Peasants, usually Indians, lived and worked on haciendas. Colonial Times Economy
Independence Spain ruled Mexico for 300 years. Miguel Hidalgo, a Catholic priest, led the revolt against Spain. Hidalgo was killed in 1811, but Mexico won independence in 1821. Later Struggles Texas broke away from Mexico fifteen years after independence. During the resulting Mexican-American War, Mexico lost nearly half of its territory. In the mid-1800s, Benito Juárez helped Mexico survive a French invasion and reduced the privileges of the church and army. In the early 1900s, hacienda owners and foreign companies had much influence. The Mexican Revolution, 1910-1920, resulted in land reform. Independence and Later Struggles
Main Idea 3:Spanish and native cultures have influenced Mexico’s customs and traditions today. • Most Mexicans speak Spanish. • About 90 percent of Mexicans are Roman Catholic. Spanish • Many people speak an American Indian language that ties them to their ethnic group. • These languages identify a person as Indian. American Indian • Mexicans have unique practices that result from the mixing of cultures. • For example, Mexicans celebrate the Day of the Dead to remember dead ancestors. • This holiday is held on All Souls’ Day, but reflects native customs and beliefs. Spanish and American Indian
Mexico Today • The Big Idea • Mexico has four culture regions that all play a part in the country’s government and economy. • Main Ideas • Government has traditionally played a large role in Mexico’s economy. • Mexico has four distinct culture regions.
Mexico is a democracy, but the same party ruled for 71 years. A different political party came to power in 2000 when Vicente Fox was elected president. Mexico’s government controlled most economic activity for many years, but today that has changed. As a developing country, Mexico has challenges. Debt to foreign banks Unemployment Inflation, a rise in prices that occurs when currency loses buying power Mexico’s economy has been growing since 1994 when the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) made trade with the U.S. and Canada easier. Main Idea 1:Government has traditionally played a large role in Mexico’s economy.
Mexico’s Economy • Agriculture • Farms have long been a part of Mexican economy. • Only 12 percent of the land can be farmed. • Farmers practice slash-and-burn agriculture, burning forests to clear land for planting. • Farmers grow cash crops, crops that farmers can sell for a profit. • Industry • Major industries include oil, mining, and manufacturing. • Many foreign companies have built factories along the U.S. border because labor is cheaper. • Some Mexican workers come to the U.S. to look for jobs. • Tourism • Tourists visit old colonial cities and Maya and Aztec monuments. • Coastal cities are popular with tourists.
All Mexicans share cultural characteristics. Yet, four regions differ in culture, population, resources, and climate: Greater Mexico City Central Mexico Northern Mexico Southern Mexico Main Idea 2: Mexico has four distinct culture regions.
Greater Mexico City Includes the capital and 50 smaller cities Has a population of more than 19 million Second largest city in world Huge, dense population causes problems. Smog, a mixture of smoke, chemicals, and fog, created by factories and cars Poverty Central Mexico North of Mexico City Many cities established for ranching or mining during the colonial period Colonial heritage: church near main central square, or plaza Small family farms that grow vegetables, corn and wheat Mining centers New industries leading to rapid growth of cities Mexico’s Culture Regions
Northern Mexico One of the country’s wealthiest and most modern regions Trade with U.S. helping growth of economy Has many maquiladoras, U.S. and foreign-owned factories Influenced by American television, music, and culture Residents crossing into the U.S. to shop, work, or live United States tries to prevent illegal crossing Southern Mexico Least populated and industrialized region Many Indian language speakers Subsistence farming and slash-and-burn agriculture Two major export crops: sugarcane and coffee Increased oil production along the Gulf coast Yucatán Peninsula: tourism to Maya ruins and beaches Tiny fishing towns transformed to booming tourist centers Mexico’s Culture Regions, continued