ap human geography textbook pdf chapter 2 : The name of this chapter is Population. We’ll find answer some of important key questions including-
1. Where in the world do people live and why?
2. Why do populations rise or fall in particular places?
3. Why does population composition matter?
4. How does the geography of health influence population dynamics?
5. How do governments affect population change?
ap human geography textbook pdf chapter 2
When geographers study population, they focus on the variability of demographic features and factors across space. Demography is the study of population in general perspective, and population geographers work in tandem with demographers, seeking answers to the problems posed by these variations.
The concept of scale is crucial in this research because such variability occurs from region to region, country to country, and within individual countries themselves.
Demographers report the population density of a country as a measure of total population relative to land size (Fig. 2.3). Population density assumes an even distribution of the population over the land.
The United States, for example, with a territory of 3,7 l 7,796 square miles or 9,62 9,047 square kilometers (including the surfaces of lakes and ponds and coastal waters up to three nautical miles from shore) had a population of 308.2 mi ll ion in
20 10. This yields an average population density for the United States o f just over 82 per square mile (3 2 per sq km).
This density figure is also known as the country’s arithmetic population density, and in a very general way it emphasizes the contrasts between the United States and such countries as Bangladesh (2741 per sq mi or 1058 per sq km), the Netherlands (1046 per sq mile or404 per sq km), and Japan (875 per sq mile or 338 per sq km).
Why do populations rise or fall in particular places?
In the late 1960s, alarms sounded throughout the world with the publication of Paul Ehrlich’s The Population Bomb. Ehrlich and others warned that the world’s population was increasing too quickly- and was outpacing our food production! We can trace alarms over the burgeoning world population back to 1798, when British economist Thomas Malthus published An Essay of the Principles of Population.
In this work Malthus warned that the world’s population was increasing faster than the food supplies needed to sustain it. His reasoning was that food supplies grew linearly, adding acreage and crops incrementally by year, whereas population grew exponentially, compounding on the year before. From 1803 to 1826, Malthus issued revised editions of his essay and responded vigorously to a barrage of criticism.
The predictions Malthus made assumed food production is confined spatially, that what people can eat within country depends on what is grown in me country. We now know his assumption does not hold true; countries are not closed systems.
Malthus did not foresee how globalization would aid the exchange of agricultural goods across me world. Mercantilism, colonialism, and capitalism brought interaction among me Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia, and me Pacific.
Through global interaction, new agricultural methods developed, and commodities and livestock diffused across oceans. In me 1700s, farmers in Ireland grew dependent on a South American crop d1at was well suited for its rocky soils, the potato.
Why does population composition matter?
Maps showing the regional distribution and density of populations tell us about the number of people in countries or regions, but they cannot reveal two other aspects of those populations: the number of men and women and their ages.
These aspects of population, the population composition, are important because a populous country where half the population is very young has quire different problems than a populous country where a large proportion of the population is elderly. Then geographers study populations, therefore, they are concerned not only with spatial distribution and growth rates but also with population composition.
T he composition is the structure of a population in terms of age, sex, and other properties such as marital status and education. Age and sex are key indicators of population composition, and demographers and geographers use population pyramids to represent these traits visually.
The population pyramid displays the percentages of each age group in the total population (normally five-year increments) by a horizontal bar whose length represents its share. Males in the group are to the left of the center line, females to the right.
How does the geography of health influence population dynamics?
The condition of a country’s population requires much more than simply knowing the total population or the growth rate. Also of significance is the welfare of the country’s people across regions, ethnicity, or social classes. Among the most important influences on population dynamics are geographical differences in sanitation, the prevalence of diseases, and the availability of health care.
One of the leading measures of the condition of a country’s population is the infant mortality r ate (IMR). Infant mortality is recorded as a baby’s death during the first year following its birth (unlike child mortality, which records death between ages 1 and 5). Infant mortality is normally given as the number of cases per thousand, that is, per thousand live births.
In societies where most women bear a large number of babies, the women also tend to be inadequately nourished, exhausted from overwork, suffering from disease, and poorly educated. Often, infants die because they are improperly weaned.
Demographers report that many children die because their parents do not know how to cope with the routine childhood problem of diarrhea. This condition, together with malnutrition, is the leading killer of children throughout the world. Poor sanitation is yet another threat to infants and children.
How do governments affect population change?
Over the past century, many of the world ‘s governments have instituted policies designed to influence the overall growth rate or ethnic ratios within the population. Certain policies directly affect the birth rate via laws ranging from subsidized abortions to forced sterilization. Others influence family size through taxation or subvention. These policies fall into three groups: expansive, eugenic, and restrictive.
T he former Soviet Union and China under Mao Zedong led otl1er communist societies in expansive population policies, which encourage large families and raise the rate of natural increase. Ideological, anti capitalist motives drove those policies, since abandoned in China.
Today, some countries are again pursuing expansive population policies-because their populations are aging and declining. The aging population in Europe has encouraged some countries to embark on policies to encourage (through tax incentives and other fiscal means) families to have more children.
Birth rates in Russia plummeted after the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union. The TFR in Russia in 1980 was 2.04, and now it is only 1.34. Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin calls the demographic crisis Russia’s greatest current problem. The Russian government offers cash subsidies of$10,000 to women who give birth to a second or third child.
Population pyramids illustrate that as wealthier countries worry about supporting their aging populations, poorer countries have problems of tl1eir own. A high birth rate in a poor country does not necessarily mean overpopulation-some of the highest population densities in the world are found in wealthy countries.
Even poor countries that have lowered their birth rates and their deatl1 rates are constantly negotiating what is morally acceptable to their people and their cultures.
Geography offers much to the study of population. Through geography we can see differences the population problems across space, how what happens at one scale affects what goes on at other scales, and how different cultures and countries approach population questions.
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