This is an introductory course in geography, a discipline that examines the relationships between and amongst people, places, environments, and cultures…
“To a revolutionary degree man changes geography as he goes along.” —Isaiah Bowman, 1946
“La géographie, ça sert, d’abord, à faire la guerre.” (The main purpose of Geography is to make war.) —Yves Lacoste, 1976
“A map is not the territory, but a territory itself.” —Aritha van Herk, 1982
This is an introductory course in geography, a discipline that examines the relationships between and amongst people, places, environments, and cultures. Over the course of the semester we will cover a range of concepts that will enable you to engage critically with geography as an academic discipline and as a set of ideas and research methods. As the course title suggests, we will also interrogate the geographic aspects of several important contemporary world issues like connectivity and global networks, human migration, citizenship, cultural identity, urbanization, economies, and politics. It is a political course in that we will emphasize and explore the connections between power, space, and knowledge. It is a historical endeavor in that we seek to expose the fragments that will help us make sense of the present. Together, we will work to open spaces for critical discussion about the ways that spatial processes, technological change, and human action are key facets of the evolving global landscape.