Published on April 10, 2008
Map of North America: Map of North America The United States and Canada: The United States and Canada Themes of the Lecture: Themes of the Lecture A region of past and present cultural intersection Diverse natural environments and abundant natural resources Global connections to the region People on the move: internal mobility and immigration The material wealth and high living standards of the regions Study Question: Study Question 11A: P507 11B: P513 Outline of the Lecture: Outline of the Lecture Territory and Human Settlement Regional Cultural History Physical Geography and Human Environment Interaction World Roles Territory and Human Settlement : Territory and Human Settlement Territory Canada is the second largest after the Russian Federation in area The United States is fourth after China South: Mexico North: Arctic Ocean East : Atlantic Ocean West : Pacific Ocean Human Settlement Canada’s huge land area is sparsely inhabited with a 2005 population of 32.2 million The United States is the world third largest country in population with 296.5 million in 2005 compared with China and India with more than 1 billion. Both US and Canada are urbanized nations with 80% of people living in or near urban metropolitan areas. Thus the huge output of Canadian and U. S. industries comes from just 5% of the world population, making the majority of the people who live in this region extremely affluent relative to global averages. Regional Cultural History: Regional Cultural History The Emergence of a Region Native America European Settlers Wealth of Natural Resources Human Resources The Emergence of a Region: The Emergence of a Region North American and its indigenous population were largely unknown to the rest of the world before Columbus reached the new world in 1492. The indigenous people of North America lived in societies based on agriculture, hunting, trading.. In the three centuries after the European “discovery” of the region, North America became a series of colonies and occupied territories governed by the French, Spanish, British, Dutch, Russians, and Swedish with British becoming the dominant power by the mid-1700s. Settlers of south of the St. Lawrence River valley fought to become the independent United States of America by sighing the Declaration of Independence in 1776, forcing Britain to recognize U.S. sovereignty. Canada achieved independence through the British North America Act in 1867, while maintaining legal ties to Britain until 1982. Canada today is a fully independent country that enjoys membership in the Commonwealth of Nations. Native Americans: Native Americans Native Americans inhabited North America for centuries before 1500, who probably migrated from Siberia to Alaska over thousands of years ago. By 1500, they lived in a tribal society with hierarchical structure The groups in the eastern forests raised corn, beans, and squash, hunted and fished, and lived in village settlements. Those in the warmer lower Mississippi Valley used a surplus from farming to support urban development such as Natchez. Hunting groups. Such as the Dakota, inhabited the prairie environment on the plains between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains and killed bison to supply their food, clothing and shelter needs. Along the Pacific coast from present-day northern California to southern Alaska, small tribes fished plentiful seafood. After the arrival of the Europeans, many Native Americans were killed by the introduction of diseases to which they had no immunity. Wealth of Natural Resources: Wealth of Natural Resources Human Resources: Human Resources Human Resources: Human Resources New people, New Skill Europeans brought their own culture, tradition, and their own skills. Tensions among Protestants, Catholics, and Jews were worked out in the context of economic competition and residential congregations of like-minded people Africans who were forced to migrate to USA were primarily served as slaves and remained as the target of discrimination Education and Technology The New Untied States sought to develop conditions in which its whole population could flourish by making the most of their freedoms under the democratic Constitution. The United States established compulsory education much earlier than European countries. Its emphasis on technology transfer began with the late 1800s land grants for establishing engineering and farming universities in many states Human Resources: Human Resources Andrew Carnegie built larger steel mills to gain economies of scale. Then he bought out other steelmakers in a time of economic recession in the 1870s to integrate the steel industry horizontally. In the next stage of his vertical integration, he purchased both coal and iron mines that provided the raw materials and the heavy engineering corporations that used the steel. By 1900 Carnegie’s United States Steel Corporation dominated the industry. Canada Emerges: Canada Emerges Canada began the process of becoming a major industrial country in the late 1800s. British rule that suppressed internal development, as well as a lack of capital and expertise, hindered the creation and expansions of Canada’s global connections. In 1867, Canada became a dominion within the British Empire, when Canadian leaders began to integrate their vast country by building transcontinental railroads to encourage the settlement of the prairie grasslands and the Pacific coast. Physical Geography and Human-Environment Interaction: Physical Geography and Human-Environment Interaction Tropical to Polar Climates Mountains and Plains Major Rivers and the Great Lakes Natural Vegetation and Soils Natural Hazards Regional Environmental Issues Tropical to Polar Climates: Tropical to Polar Climates Mountains and Plains: Mountains and Plains Western Mountains The western third of Canada and the United States is primarily composed of rugged mountains Mount McKinely in the Alaskan Ranges is the highest peak (20, 231 ft) The Rocky Mountain extend from Alaska and northwestern Canada southward to New Mexico To their west in the United States are extensive high plateaus . West of the plateaus are the Sierra Nevada mountains of California and the Casdade ranges through Oregon and Washington to the US-Canada border. Canadian Shield About 50% of Canada has the ancient rocks of the Canadian Shield at the surface. These are the oldest rocks in North American and contain major deposits of mineral ores. Mountains and Plains: Mountains and Plains Interior Lowlands Lowlands with little relief dominate southern Ontario, the Prairie Provinces, and the central United States. Layers of sedimentary rock cover the shield rocks, forming plateaus and escarpments such as the Niagara falls plunge. In the U. S. Midwest and in Ontario, Canada, most of these rocks are covered by deposits from the melting ices sheets. East of the Rockies, the Mississippi drainage basin comprises more than a thousand kilometers of lowland river valley Appalachian Mountain System East of the Mississippi lowlands, the Appalachian Mountains form a continuous chain of rolling hills and mountains extending from northern Georgia into the Adirondacks of New York., the Green and White Mountains of the New England, and the Atlantic Provinces of Canada. In the northeastern Untied States and eastern Canada, the glaciers scraped away much of the surface rock and soil, carried it southward, and deposited it along the east coast that form much of Long Islands and Cape Cod Major Rivers and the Great Lakes: Major Rivers and the Great Lakes Major Rivers The Mississippi River was the basis of early interior transportation and continues that role for bulk materials The Ohio River (transportation route at the heart of manufacturing developments in US in late 1800s) The Colorado River (power and irrigation water) The Columbia River (irrigate farmland generate hydroelectricity in the northwestern US) The Great Lakes The Great Lakes are a chain of freshwater lakes located in eastern North America, on the Canada-United States border. Consisting of Lakes Superior, Michigan, Huron (or Michigan-Huron), Erie, and Ontario, they form the largest group of freshwater lakes on Earth. They are sometimes referred to as inland seas or Canada and the United States' fourth coast. Natural Vegetation and Soils: Natural Vegetation and Soils The hot deserts of the Southwest support mainly drought-resistant varieties such as cactus and low shrubs. The subhumid Great Plains and Prairies of the western Mississippi River basin and south central Canada had a natural vegetation of prairie grasslands From tropical southern Florida to the cool, temperate Northeast supported broadleaf forest, which gives rise to brown earth soils of moderate to good fertility North of broadleaf forest is a wide band of needleleaf forest The eastern mountains have thin soils on steep slopes. In the southeastern US the frequent presence of sandy soils with low nutrient caused some areas to be dominated by pine trees Along the western coast of the United States, north of San Francisco, huge fires and cedars, growing over 100 m tall, formed a massive timber resource. Natural Hazards-US: Natural Hazards-US Natural Hazards-Canada: Natural Hazards-Canada Canada is less troubled by most of the natural hazards plaguing the US, primarily due to its position in the high latitudes of the Northern Hemispheres. The waters off the Canadian coasts are much too cold to support hurricanes. The extreme temperature and moisture contrasts needed for severe thunderstorms and accompanying tornadoes, hail, and lightening are also less common in Canada due to its high latitudinal position Regional Environmental IssuesUS: Regional Environmental Issues US Regional Environmental IssuesUS: Regional Environmental Issues US Regional Environmental IssuesCanada: Regional Environmental Issues Canada Canada, with a much smaller population in a slightly larger area, has fewer environmental problems than in the States. Industrial pollution largely created in the US travels through air currents and reaches the ground in parts of Canada in the form of acid rain. The increasing size of hydroelectricity projects in Quebec led to environmental and Native American protest over the resulting hydrologic and land use changes. World Roles: World Roles The United States and the United Nations Globalization: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Global Role of the Regional Economy North American Population Patterns The United States and the United Nations: The United States and the United Nations Host country of UN (New York City). US, along with China, France, The UK, and Russia) holds the permanent seat on UN Security Council. Internationally, countries and national groups benefiting from actions of the UN applaud the execution of decisions made by the organization. Other groups, not benefiting from specific measures, criticize the organization and often the United States for interfering. Critics question the validity of the UN due to the unequal distribution of power on the Security Council. Controversy is furthered by the US reluctance to promptly pay its financial dues . Global Role of the Regional Economy--US: Global Role of the Regional Economy--US Economic growth and victory in WWII gave the United States political superpower status alongside the Soviet Union. The 1991 breakup of the Soviet Bloc brought US the status of sole superpower. U.S. corporations expanded abroad, taking opportunities to do so after WWII during the economic recoveries in Europe and East Asia. After the 1950s, US established a huge lead in the initial development and information technology. Global Role of the Regional Economy--Canada: Global Role of the Regional Economy--Canada Canada lagged behind its neighbor through the early 1900s, partly because of restrictions resulting from its colonial ties to Britain and partly because of its smaller home market for goods and protection of its own industries. It gradually became more connected with US economy. In the post-WWII, rich stocks of metal ores in Canada’ north, coal, oil, and natural gas in Alberta; and hydroelectric powers generation in northern Quebec ignited new development and provided the basis for growing Canadian affluence. Canadians enjoy material living standards almost equal to those in the states North American Population Patterns: North American Population Patterns Population change: Natural Growth: Population change: Natural Growth US population growth . According to the U.S. Bureau of the Census, the resident population of the United States, projected to 02/18/08 at 22:02 GMT (EST+5) is 303,463,582 One birth every... 8 seconds One death every... 11 seconds One international migrant (net) every....28 seconds Net gain of one person every...13 seconds Canadian population growth Today’s date : 02/18/2008 Estimated Canadian population: 33,185,769 One birth every one minute and 29 seconds One death every two minutes and 14 seconds A net migration gain of one person every 2 minutes and 29 seconds Population Distribution: Increasing Urban Density: Population Distribution: Increasing Urban Density US population distribution ¾ of us population live in urban areas Over 90 of US population lives within a two-hour drive of a large city of over 300,000 people. Over 40 million people live along the eastern seaboard in an urban corridor from Washington D. C to Boston Vast areas of the western US, except the Pacific coast, contains very low population densities. Hawaiian population is clustered near Honolulu and resort towns. Alaska, the larges US state, has the lowest population. Canadian population distribution The vast majority of Canadians are concentrated in a belt across the southern part of the country nearly parallel to the border with US. Most of the reminder of the country is virtually empty.. Canada is expecting a trend toward metropolitan expansion (Toronto and Montreal, Vancouver Ottawa…) Patterns of Migration in the United States: Patterns of Migration in the United States British domination of immigration was followed by Irish and German immigration during the mid-1800s. Immigration from Southern European, particular from Italy in late 1800s was followed by immigrants from Slavic countries of eastern Europe, the Balkans, and the Russia in early 20 century. Africans were forced to migrate to North America in the 1700s. During the 1800s, the African population continued to grow through natural growth after the end of Atlantic slave trade in the 1860s. From the mid-1900s, Hispanic peoples from Mid and South Americas, and Asians became major sources of immigrants. Contemporary Immigration Patterns in the Untied States: Contemporary Immigration Patterns in the Untied States Many highly educated people migrate to the United States to fill employment demands in high-tech and computer-related industries, medical research, and numerous fields within the hard sciences. Some immigrants come to the US with no material wealth or education for a better life. The 2000 federal census counted 281 million people in the United States. 200 million were of European origin. 34.6 million (12.3%) were African Americans, 2.5 million (0.9%) were Native Americans. 10 million (3.6) were Asians. 35 million (12.5%) were Hispanics. Native Americans and the United States Government: Native Americans and the United States Government Native Americans Many Native Americans lived in reservation lands that were often arid and hostile for agricultural productivity. They are among the country’s most materially impoverished communities. By the 1970s 50% of Native Americans were unemployed, and 90% were on welfare. US Government Attempts were made in the late 1900s to reduce the poverty imposed on Native Americans. Native Americans elsewhere in the US raised questions about the ownership and management of the natural resources on their reservations, including minerals and water. Some Native Americans developed tourist facilities on their reservations. Casino gambling is a significant source of income for some Native Americans. Internal Migration in the United States: Internal Migration in the United States During the 1800s, the main internal migrations were from the Atlantic seaboard westward to the interior and then on to the West coast. Within the south, the plantation economy was transferred westward from the Atlantic plain to the Mississippi Delta area, taking with its planters and slaves. After the Civil War in the 1890s, many African Americans were able to migrate independently, creating a small stream of northward movement. From the mid-1900s, large number of African Americans moved from the rural and urban south to northern cities Most of the movement of African Americans out of the South were completed by 1970s. Canadian Patterns of Ethnic Integration: Canadian Patterns of Ethnic Integration Multi-culturalism is Canadian national policy, which makes Canada one of the most attractive destination for people. emigrating from other countries.. Contemporary immigration trends for Canada exhibit significant increase in the numbers of people migrating from Asia and the Americas and an overall decrease in the European immigrant population. Example of Toronto Canada. As of 2001, 42.8% of the residents of the city proper belong to a visible minority group, and visible minorities are projected to comprise a majority in Toronto by 2017. Statistics Canada's 2006 figures indicate that Toronto has surpassed Miami in this year. While Miami's foreign-born population consists mostly of Cubans and other Latin Americans, no single nationality or culture dominates Toronto's immigrant population, making it the most diverse city in the world. Centrifugal Force: The Challenges of Quebec and the Rights of Indigenous Canadians: Centrifugal Force: The Challenges of Quebec and the Rights of Indigenous Canadians The Quebec independent movement is a political movement aimed at either attaining independent statehood or some degree of greater political autonomy for the Canadian province of Quebec. One of the most organized internal challenge to the Francophone’s independent movement comes from an indigenous Canadian people known as the Cree, who claim the northern third to northern half of Quebec as their ancestral land. The Cree do not wish to be part of an independent Quebec. The Northern half of Quebec is the site of significant natural resource potential.
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