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Information on this website is posted for historical reference only. Please visit the Office of the Registrar for current requirements.



1. Introduction to Human Geography

11F, 12W, 12F, 13W: 10

The purpose of this course is to provide an understanding of how human societies organize their geographic space and why certain patterns emerge in the resulting human landscape. Principles of location, place, territoriality and geopolitics, migration, gender, economic change, and power are used to examine the geographic distribution of human activity. Geographic comparisons are drawn between North and South, and on global, regional, and local issues. Dist: SOC or INT; WCult: CI. Mollett (11F, 13W), Fox (12W).

2. Global Health and Society (Identical to International Studies 18)

12W, 13W: 2A

Only a few decades ago, we were ready to declare a victory over infectious diseases. Today, infectious diseases are responsible for the majority of morbidity and mortality experienced throughout the world. Even developed countries are plagued by resistant “super-bugs” and antibiotic misuse. This course will examine the epidemiology and social impact of past and present infectious disease epidemics in the developing and developed world. The introduction of drugs to treat HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa will be considered from political, ethical, medical, legal and economic perspectives. Lessons from past and current efforts to control global infectious diseases will guide our examination of the high-profile infectious disease pathogens poised to threaten our health in the future.

Open to all students. Limited to 35 students. Dist: INT or SOC. Adams, Butterly.

3. The Natural Environment

11F, 13S: 11; Laboratory W or Th 2:00-4:00 or 4:00-6:00

Our natural environment results from an array of climatic, biogeographic, and other physical processes that have changed dramatically over time in response to natural and human-induced disturbance. This course begins by presenting the fundamentals of atmospheric processes; then examines the physical controls on the resulting global pattern of landforms, soils, and vegetation biomes across spatial and temporal scales; and ultimately explains the form and pattern of the earth’s physical geography. Emphasis is also placed on demonstrating the role of human disturbance on these natural processes through shifts in global climate, land use, deforestation and other anthropogenic mechanisms. The media of presentation will be lecture and both field and laboratory exercises. Dist: SLA. Magilligan.

4. New England Landscapes and Environments

12S, 13S: 10A

Small enough to know well, New England boasts an enormous variety of human and physical features in a dynamic setting of change. In this class we focus on the physical aspects of the landscape, learning about its geology, flora, fauna, and climate as they set the stage for and are affected by human activities. The class includes two field trips, visitors, films, and readings from a variety of sources. Dist: SCI. Conkey.

5. Global Climate Change

12W, 13W: 11

Climate changes frequently occur on both large and small spatial scales and over both short-term and longer timescales. Society and policy-makers do not usually notice those changes unless they menace us directly—yet we ignore these changes at our peril. In this introductory course we will examine causes and potential effects of both long- and short-term climatic changes and the interactions of climate and human agents of change. Some of the topics addressed in this course may include the ‘greenhouse effect,’ the ozone hole, atmospheric aspects of acid rain, El Ni–o phenomenon, and effects of volcanic dust and airborne pollutants. The format is a combination of lectures, class discussion, films and guest speakers, and hands-on simulation exercises. Open to all classes. Dist: SCI. Conkey.

6. Introduction to International Development (Identical to International Studies 16)

12W: 12 12S: 2 12F: 10A

Why are some countries rich and others so persistently poor? What can and should be done about this global inequity and by whom? We address these development questions from the perspective of critical human geography. Focusing on the regions of Latin America, Africa and Asia, we examine how development meanings and practices have varied over time and place, and how they have been influenced by the colonial history, contemporary globalization and international aid organizations. Dist: SOC or INT; WCult: NW. Freidberg (12F ), Fox (12W, 12S).

7. First-Year Seminars in Geography

Consult special listings

11. Qualitative Methods and the Research Process in Geography

12W: 2A 13S: 10A

Questions about how knowledge is produced, who produces it, and what “counts” as knowledge are fundamental to the research process. This course focuses on building understandings of qualitative research methods and methodologies employed by geographers to produce knowledge about social relations, human perceptions, and human-environment interactions. The course introduces several of the main qualitative methods available for geographic analysis and interpretation, and places these methods within broader questions of how research is conceived and carried out. Dist: SOC. Fluri (12W), Sneddon(13S).


12. Wilderness, Culture and Environmental Conservation

11F, 13W: 10

The purpose of this course is to describe and examine the manifold ways that environmental alterations have occurred-over both geologic and historical timescales. Considerable research over the past several decades has shown that anthropogenic disturbance has significantly modified natural processes frequently leading to degraded conditions. The goal of the course is first to establish that shifts in climate, vegetation, and landscapes are “natural” and have occurred over geologic time and that the timing and magnitude of these shifts provides the necessary background to evaluate the type, magnitude, and frequency of anthropogenic disturbance. The second, and major theme is to present and examine the types of human-induced changes in biotic, atmospheric, and terrestrial conditions (e.g. logging, grazing, urbanization), and to evaluate the social and management issues resulting from these anthropogenic disturbances. Lastly, the third part of the course will focus on the human dimensions of global change by exploring the social aspects of environmental change. In the last part of the class, we will focus on how global environmental changes generate impacts at the local scale, and how small-scale transformations propagate into large-scale global environmental issues. Dist: SOC. Magilligan.

13. Population, Culture, and Environment

12S: 11

The growth and spatial distribution of human population is becoming one of the most important global security issues. This course argues that a geographic perspective on overpopulation, immigration, environment degradation, abortion, human rights, and cultural genocide is both illuminating and important. After covering fundamentals of fertility, morality, migration, and composition, the course details a series of national and international case studies. Where appropriate, attention is given to the public policy aspects of these population issues. Dist: SOC or INT. Fox.

14. Global Water Resources

13W: 12

This course is designed to provide students with a general background to the issues confronting water resource management. The course covers the political, social and legal aspects confronting effective water policy decision making. One of the goals is to demonstrate that the technical aspects of hydrology occur within a socio-political arena. The material also covers the environmental aspects of water issues and the manner in which these issues are handled by regulatory agencies and the legal sector. Dist: SOC or INT. Magilligan.

15. Food and Power

13S: 2A

In a world glutted with food, why do millions still suffer chronic hunger? In an international community committed to free trade, why is food the most common source of trade wars and controversies? In a country where less than five percent of the population farms, why does the “farm lobby” remain so politically powerful? In societies where food has never been faster or more processed, why are organic and “slow” foods in such demand? These are among the questions this course will consider, drawing on the insights of both political economy and cultural analysis. Dist: SOC or INT; WCult: NW. Freidberg.

16. Moral Economies of Development

13S: 10A

During the past quarter century, the gap between the world’s richest and poorest regions has steadily widened, even as technological advance has shrunk the distances between them. This class begins by examining how globalization has shaped awareness and expressions of care for distant strangers. It then focuses on the moral economies underlying practices such as Fair Trade, corporate social responsibility, and transnational labor justice campaigns. Some background in international development is recommended. Freidberg.

17. Geopolitics and Third World Development

12S: 10 12F: 10A

Political geographers have recently recovered a critical understanding of “geopolitics” in order to highlight how geographical representations—and the construction of spaces and places—are a constitutive part of politics from the global to the local scale. In keeping with this, this course will examine the mutual constructions of places, identities, and politics from a Third World perspective. The course will begin with an overview of geopolitical discourses that underpinned the processes of Western imperialism and colonialism such as “civilization” and “social darwinism.” It will then examine contemporary geopolitical (dis)orders through the lens of topics such as globalization, gender, environmental security, humanitarian aid, and terrorism. Finally, the course will examine alternative geopolitical imaginations as constructed through social movements and grassroots politics. Dist. SOC or INT; WCult, NW. Sneddon.


20. Economic Geography and Globalization

11F, 12F: 2A

The new global economy has become integrated across national boundaries, profoundly altering the fortunes of countries, regions, and cities. This course addresses questions that stem from these changes: for example, why do industries locate where they do? What is the impact of foreign investment on local and regional economies? Why are rates of international migration increasing? What can workers and communities do after disinvestment and deindustrialization has occurred? Particular attention is devoted to the United States and the effects on minorities and labor of differential regional economic expansion, renewal, and decline. Dist: SOC. Wright

22. Urban Geography

12W: 11, 12X: 2A

This course examines the historical, cultural, and socio-economic geographies of cities. We begin by tracing the process of urban development from its inception over 5,000 years ago, to industrial modern cities, to postmodern urban forms, using case studies to illuminate certain key features and processes. We then focus on understanding the particular dynamics that shape cities today. Examples are widely drawn but particular attention will be given to American urban patterns and processes. Dist: SOC. Domosh.

23. Power, Territoriality, and Political Geography

12W: 12

Territoriality, the geographic expression of power, is one of the most common strategies for exercising political control. This course explores the interaction of geography and politics, including the origin and function of nations and states, policing and social control, federalism, the role and status of racial and ethnic minorities, political representation and electoral redistricting. Through such topics, the class addresses questions regarding the nature of power, identity, democratic theory and the relationship between the individual and the state. We will focus particular attention on issues of scale, or how the application of territorial strategies at different spatial levels affects political relationships. Dist: SOC or INT; WCult: CI. Grove.

24. American Landscapes and Cultures

12W: 2

Someone once said that Americans are a people in space rather than a people in time. A political configuration of relatively recent vintage, the United States, nevertheless, occupies a vast amount of space. The occupation and ordering of that space has produced distinctive landscapes with many regional variations. This course will examine the formation of these cultural landscapes beginning with those produced by Native Americans, and following the settlement process up to contemporary, post-modern America. Along the way, we will explore, among other things, the development of such American landscape elements as grid-pattern towns, cowboy ranches, skyscrapers, shopping malls, and corporate office parks. Dist: SOC; WCult: CI. Domosh.

25. Social Justice and the City

11F: 12 13S: 10

This course explores issues of social justice and cities in terms of the spatial unevenness of money and power within and among cities, between cities and their hinterlands, and between cities of the world. We will examine how multiple dynamic geographic processes produce spatial and social inequalities that make cities the locus of numerous social justice issues. We will also look at how urban communities and social groups are engaged in working for social change. Dist: SOC; WCult: CI. Mollett.

26. Women, Gender and Development (Identical to Women’s and Gender Studies 30.1)

12S: 2A

This course examines gender as it relates to both women and men and as constituted by multiple factors such as place, space, class, sexuality, age, race, ethnicity, nationality, and culture-what some call categories of “difference.” We will explore how these categories of difference shape women’s and men’s daily lives, our institutions, the spaces and places we live in, and the relationships between social groups in different places and between different places in the world. Dist. SOC; WCult: CI. Fluri.

28. Immigration, Race, and Ethnicity (Identical to Latino Studies 40 and Sociology 64)

12W, 13W: 10A

This course examines 20th century immigration to the United States and pays special attention to issues of race and ethnicity. The course begins with a brief history of US immigration and then thematically covers specific topics such as economic impacts and costs, social mobility, citizenship, transnationalism, assimilation, and religious issues and their relationship to the immigrant experience. We feature nativist reactions to immigration and highlight differences within and between Latino, Asian, and European groups throughout the course. Dist. SOC; WCult: CI. Wright.

29. Global Cities (Pending Faculty Approval)

12S: 11

This course examines contemporary urbanization in a global setting – paying attention to the intersection of numerous global and local forces (political, economic, historic and cultural) shaping the planning and design (or lack thereof) of city spaces in the global south and its implications for city residents. Utilizing examples from the Middle East, India, China, Latin America and Africa, we will explore how various demographics within these places experience and navigate the dynamically changing city spaces. Rock.


31. Forest Geography

11F, 12F: 2A Laboratory–Field Tues. 2-6

Forests undergo great changes, both locally and globally. They are home to plants and animals in relation to both climatic and cultural/economic constraints. We examine such global issues by focusing on local forest ecology, native and imported plants and animals, agroforestry, and other topics of mutual concern. At least half of class meetings will be outside following study plots, mapping plant and soil patterns, “reading” forest histories, and observing animal signs and behaviors. Dist: SLA. Conkey.

35. River Processes and Watershed Science (Identical to Earth Science 71)

13S:10 Laboratory: Monday 3-5

Role of surface water and fluvial processes on landscape formation; magnitude and frequency relationships of flood flows; soil erosion, sediment transport, and fluvial landforms. This course examines the links between watershed scale processes such as weathering, denudation, and mass wasting on the supply of water and sediment to stream channels on both contemporary and geologic timescales and further evaluates the role of climate change on the magnitude and direction of shifts in watershed and fluvial processes. Dist: SLA. Magilligan.


41. Gender, Space and Islam (Identical to Women’s and Gender Studies 37.2)

12F: 10

We will address various aspects of Feminism, Islam and Space. This course will seek to answer various questions about space, gender and Islam such as: What constitutes a Muslim Space and the “Muslim World”? Who decides and defines these spaces? How are these spaces generated and influenced by Islam or Islamic practices? How do such gendering of spaces differ by place? Additionally we will explore the readings of several Islamic feminist scholars that address several gender related topics such as women’s right, gender roles, honor and Sharia (Islamic law). Dist: SOC; WCult: CI. Fluri.

43. Geographies of Latin America

13W: 12

This course provides a survey of Latin America geography from pre-colonial times through to the present, encompassing the region’s physical features, diverse cultural histories, the economic and political powers that have shaped and re-shaped its national boundaries, and the current influence of global processes on society and the environment. Special attention will be paid to the 20th century development issues—industrialization, urbanization, resource exploitation and regional integration—and their implications for the region’s future. Dist: SOC; WCult: NW. Mollett.

44. Environment and Politics in Southeast Asia (Identical to, and described under, Environmental Studies 44)

11F: 10A 12F: 2A

Over the past several decades, the people and environments of Southeast Asia have confronted a host of political, economic and cultural processes commonly grouped together under the heading “development”. As witnessed by recent media reports detailing massive forest fires in Indonesia and dam controversies in Malaysia and Thailand, these development processes have resulted in drastic transformations in the landscapes, forests, and river systems of the region. These processes have likewise produced dramatic alterations in the livelihoods of the people who depend on and interact with the region’s ecological systems.Dist: SOC or INT; WCult: NW. Sneddon.

47. The Czech Republic in the New Europe

12S, 13S: D.F.S.P. (Prague, Czech Republic)

This course seeks to develop an understanding of the physical morphology and cultural landscape of the contemporary Czech Republic. Special attention will be given to the dialectic of transnational integration and decentralist reaction common in Europe today.

Prerequisites: Geography 1 or 3 and one course numbered between 12 and 41, or permission of the instructor. A minimum of one methods course (Geography 10, 11, 55, 58) is strongly recommended. Dist: SOC; WCult: W. Fluri (13S), Mollett (12S).

49. Gender and Geopolitics of South Asia (Identical to, and described under, Women’s and Gender Studies 41.2)

12S: 10A

Open to all students. Dist: SOC; WCult: NW. Fluri.


50. Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

11F, 11S, 12F, 12S: 12 Laboratory: Tu 1:00-3:00 or W 2:00-4:00

Geographical information systems (GIS) are computer-based systems that process and answer questions about spatial data relative to concerns of a geographic nature. This course focuses on the basic principles of GIS, including data capture and manipulation, methods of spatial interpolation, and GIS trends and applications. The course is not intended to train students to be GIS operators; rather, to explain the fundamentals of this rapidly growing technology. A series of laboratory exercises will expose the students to GIS systems. Dist: TLA. Shi.

51. Remote Sensing (Identical to, and described under, Earth Sciences 65)

12W, 13W: 10A; Laboratory: W 1:00-4:00 or Th 1:00-4:00

Prerequisite: Geography 3 or Earth Sciences 1, 2, 5, or 6. Dist: TLA. Hawley (13W) Chipman(12W).

56. The Geographies of Health and Disease

12S, 13S: 10A

This interdisciplinary course introduces the principles and methods used to understand health and disease in the geographical context. Topics include monitoring epidemics, tracking disease outbreaks, identifying environmental factors that may promote or hinder health, and studying geographic impediments in accessing health care services. Learning takes place through lecture and discussion, readings of selected manuscripts, hands-on experience in the GIS lab, assignments, and completion of a term project. Previous courses in geography or health are recommended. Dist:TAS. Berke, Shi.

57. Urban Applications of GIS

11F: 2 Laboratory: Th 1:00-3:00

This course is about how to use GIS technology to solve urban problems. The application problems that will be discussed in the class are from areas including urban planning and design, public administration, business decision-making, environment assessment, land use change, and social and political issues. The data, spatial analytical techniques, and GIS software that have been used in these applications will be examined through studying real-world examples. The class contains three components: the lectures, the lab exercises and the term project. The software packages used for the lab exercises include ArcGIS and MapInfo. Prerequisite: Geography 58. Dist: TLA. Shi.

59. Environmental Applications of GIS (Identical to Earth Sciences 77)

13W: 11; Laboratory M 1:00-3:00 or Tu 1:00-3:00

This course focuses on the uses of GIS techniques in solving practical environmental problems. The ideas of how GIS can be applied to various fields of environmental studies and applications will be presented, and this is achieved through examining real application examples concerning soils, watershed hydrology, vegetation, land use/land cover, climate, pollutions, landscape ecology, and natural hazards. The students will also learn fundamental knowledge and techniques required in application projects for solving environmental problems, including the methodology of starting and running such projects, and spatial analytical techniques that are frequently used in such projects. The course is made of three components: the lectures, the lab exercises, and the term project. The software packages used for the lab exercises include ArcGIS and IDRISI. Prerequisite: Geography 58 or Geography/Earth Sciences 55, or permission of the instructor. Dist: TLA. Chipman.


80. Seminar in Geography

12S:12 12F: 2A

This course focuses on topics in advanced human geography that are not regularly taught as part of the curriculum. Course content will vary and reflect the interests and expertise of the instructor. Prerequisite: Geography 1 or permission of the instructor. Dist: SOC. Bauer (12S), Freidberg (12F).

81. Field Research in the Czech Republic

12S, 13S: D.F.S.P. (Prague, Czech Republic)

This course involves a dozen or so lectures by members of the Charles Geography faculty. These case studies will vary depending (to a degree) on expertise, but might include topics such as: forest decline in the Czech Republic and its relation to industrial pollution, the effect of land-use on sedimentation regimes of the Elbe River and its tributaries, the impact of international migration on sending and receiving nations, comparative research on the spatial organization of industrial production in market and formally-centrally planned economies, the effects of the political division of the Czech and the Slovak Republic on service areas (medical, administrative, etc.) in the border region, the geography of Foreign Direct Investment in the Czech Republic before and after the Velvet Revolution. The goal of the course is to expose students to the research interests of European geographers and to potential topics for their own independent research topics. Fieldwork comprises a significant portion of this course with both human and physical geographical site visits.

Prerequisites: Geography 1 or 3 and one course numbered between 12 and 41, or permission of the instructor. A minimum of one methods course (Geography 10, 11, 55, 58) is strongly recommended. Fluri (13S), Mollett (12S).

82. Independent Study in the Czech Republic

12S, 13S: D.F.S.P. (Prague, Czech Republic)

This course offers the qualified student an opportunity to research a topic of special interest in the Czech Republic under the joint direction of a Dartmouth staff member and Charles University staff. This course is taken as part of a three course sequence by FSP participants (Geography 47, 81, 82).

Prerequisites: Geography 1 or 3 and one course from 12-41 or permission of the instructor. Dist: SOC; WCult: W. Fluri (13S), Mollett (12S).

85. Advanced Reading in Geography

All terms: Arrange

This course offers the qualified student an opportunity to pursue a subject of special interest under the direction of a member of the staff. An outline for the reading program must be approved by the instructor prior to the first day of classes of the term in which it is to be taken. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor and the Chair.

87. Senior Thesis

All terms: Arrange

A thesis on a geographic topic selected by the student with the instructor’s approval.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor and the Chair. Open to seniors, and required of honors majors. The faculty.

90. Research in Geography

11F, 12F: 10A

This capstone course exposes students to the elements of conducting geographic research. Students synthesize their knowledge of geography by exploring the epistemological and methodological foundations of geographic research. The course involves the preparation of a research proposal on a topic each student chooses in consultation with the geography faculty.

Prerequisites: Geography 1 or 3, two courses from Social Science 10 (or equivalent), Geography 11, Geography 55/58, or permission of the instructor. Dist: SOC. Domosh (11F, 12F), Wright (11F, 12F).