Imperialism is policy or ideology of extending a nation's rule over foreign nations by military force or by gaining political and economic control of other areas. Imperialism was both normal and common worldwide throughout recorded history, the earliest examples dating from the mid-third millennium BC, diminishing only in the late 20th century. In recent times, it has been prohibited by international law. Therefore, the term is used in international propaganda to denounce an opponent's foreign policy; the term can be applied to the colonization of the Americas between the 15th and 19th centuries, as opposed to New Imperialism, which describes the expansion of Western Powers and Japan during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. However, both are examples of imperialism; the word imperialism originated from the Latin word imperium. It first became common with its current sense in Great Britain, during the 1870s and was used with a negative connotation; the word imperialism had been used to describe to what was perceived as Napoleon III's attempts of obtaining political support through foreign military interventions.
The term was and is applied to Western political and economic dominance in Asia and Africa, in the 19th and 20th centuries. Its precise meaning continues to be debated by scholars; some writers, such as Edward Said, use the term more broadly to describe any system of domination and subordination organised with an imperial center and a periphery. This definition encompasses both nominal empires and neocolonialism. "The word'empire' comes from the Latin word imperium. The greatest distinction of an empire is through the amount of land that a nation has conquered and expanded. Political power grows from conquering land. A distinction about empires is "that although political empires were built by expansion overland and cultural influences spread at least as much by sea"; some of the main aspects of trade that went overseas consisted of animals and plant products. European empires in Asia and Africa "have come to be seen as the classic forms of imperialism: and indeed most books on the subject confine themselves to the European seaborne empires".
European expansion caused the world to be divided by how developed and developing nation are portrayed through the world systems theory. The two main regions are the periphery; the core consists of areas of high profit. These critical theories of geo-politics have led to increased discussion of the meaning and impact of imperialism on the modern post-colonial world; the Russian leader Lenin suggested that "imperialism was the highest form of capitalism, claiming that imperialism developed after colonialism, was distinguished from colonialism by monopoly capitalism". This idea from Lenin stresses. Geopolitics now focuses on states becoming major economic players in the market; the term "imperialism" is conflated with "colonialism". Imperialism and colonialism have been used in order to describe one's perceived superiority and influence upon a person or group of people. Robert Young writes that while imperialism operates from the center, is a state policy and is developed for ideological as well as financial reasons, colonialism is the development for settlement or commercial intentions.
However, colonialism still includes invasion. Colonialism in modern usage tends to imply a degree of geographic separation between the colony and the imperial power. Edward Said distinguishes the difference between imperialism and colonialism by stating. Contiguous land empires such as the Russian or Ottoman have traditionally been excluded from discussions of colonialism, though this is beginning to change, since it is accepted that they sent populations into the territories they ruled. Imperialism and colonialism both dictate the political and economic advantage over a land and the indigenous populations they control, yet scholars sometimes find it difficult to illustrate the difference between the two. Although imperialism and colonialism focus on the suppression of an other, if colonialism refers to the process of a country taking physical control of another, imperialism refers to the political and monetary dominance, either formally or informally. Colonialism is seen to be the architect deciding how to start dominating areas and imperialism can be seen as creating the idea behind conquest cooperating with colonialism.
Colonialism is when the imperial nation begins a conquest over an area and eventually is able to rule over the areas the previous nation had controlled. Colonialism's core meaning is the exploitation of the valuable assets and supplies of the nation, conquered and the conquering nation gaining the benefits from the spoils of the war; the meaning of imperialism is to create an empire, by conquering the other state's lands and therefore increasing its own dominance. Colonialism is the builder and preserver of the colonial possessions in an area by a population coming from a for
Sir Halford John Mackinder was an English geographer, politician, regarded as one of the founding fathers of both geopolitics and geostrategy. He was the first Principal of University Extension College, Reading from 1892 to 1903, Director of the London School of Economics from 1903 to 1908. While continuing his academic career part-time, he was the Member of Parliament for Glasgow Camlachie from 1910 to 1922. From 1923, he was Professor of Geography the London School of Economics. Mackinder was born in Gainsborough, England, the son of a doctor, educated at Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School, Epsom College and Christ Church, Oxford. At Oxford he started studying natural sciences, specialising in zoology under Henry Nottidge Moseley, the naturalist on the Challenger expedition; when he turned to the study of history, he remarked that he was returning "to an old interest and took up modern history with the idea of seeing how the theory of evolution would appear in human development". He was a strong proponent of treating both physical geography and human geography as a single discipline.
Mackinder served as President of the Oxford Union in 1883. He received a degree in biology in one in modern history the next year. In 1887, he published "On a manifesto for the New Geography. A few months he was appointed Reader in Geography at the University of Oxford, where he introduced the teaching of the subject; as Mackinder himself put it, "a platform has been given to a geographer". This was arguably at the time the most prestigious academic position for a British geographer. In 1892, he was the first Principal of University Extension College, Reading, a role he retained until he was succeeded, in 1903, by William Macbride Childs; the college became the University of Reading in 1926, a progression that owed no small debt to his early stewardship of the institution. In 1893, he was one of the founders of the Geographical Association, which promotes the teaching of geography in schools, he became chairman of the GA from 1913 to 1946 and served as its President from 1916-17. In 1895, he was one of the founders of the London School of Economics.
At Oxford, Mackinder was the driving force behind the creation of a School of Geography in 1899. In the same year, he led an expedition, the first to climb Mount Kenya. In 1902, he published Britain and the British Seas, which included the first comprehensive geomorphology of the British Isles and which became a classic in regional geography, he was a member of the Coefficients dining club, set up in 1902 by the Fabian campaigners Sidney and Beatrice Webb, which brought together social reformers and advocates of national efficiency. In 1904, Mackinder gave a paper on "The Geographical Pivot of History" at the Royal Geographical Society, in which he formulated the Heartland Theory; this is considered as a, if not the, founding moment of geopolitics as a field of study, although Mackinder did not use the term. Whilst the Heartland Theory received little attention outside geography, this theory would exercise some influence on the foreign policies of world powers. Disappointed at not getting a full chair, Mackinder left Oxford and became director of the London School of Economics in the same year.
After 1908, he lectured only part-time. He stood unsuccessfully as a Unionist in a by-election for Hawick Burghs in 1909, he was elected to Parliament in January 1910 as Unionist Party member for the Glasgow Camlachie constituency and was defeated in 1922. He was knighted in the 1920 New Year Honours for his services as an MP, his next major work, Democratic Ideals and Reality: A Study in the Politics of Reconstruction, appeared in 1919. It followed the 1904 book titled The Geographic Pivot of the History, presented his theory of the Heartland and made a case for taking into account geopolitical factors at the Paris Peace conference and contrasted reality with Woodrow Wilson's idealism; the book's most famous quote was:. This message was composed to convince the world statesmen at the Paris Peace conference of the crucial importance of Eastern Europe as the strategic route to the Heartland was interpreted as requiring a strip of buffer state to separate Germany and Russia; these were created by the peace negotiators but proved to be ineffective bulwarks in 1939.
The principal concern of his work was to warn of the possibility of another major war. Mackinder was anti-Bolshevik, as British High Commissioner in Southern Russia in late 1919 and early 1920, during the Russian Civil War, he stressed the need for Britain to continue her support to the White Russian forces, which he attempted to unite. Mackinder's last major work was the 1943 article, “The Round World and the Winning of the Peace,” in which he envisioned a post-war world, he reiterated and expanded his Heartland view of the world, suggesting that the Atlantic Ocean would be jumped, with North America's influence pulled into the region by its use of Britain as an "moated aerodrome". Elsewhere in the world, beyond the "girdle of deserts and wilderness", the "Great Ocean" region of the Indo-Pacific Rim, was the "Monsoon lands" area of India and China that would grow in power. Mackinder was contemporary of the Swedish political scientist Rudolf Kjellén, born three years l
Racism is the belief in the superiority of one race over another, which results in discrimination and prejudice towards people based on their race or ethnicity. The use of the term "racism" does not fall under a single definition; the ideology underlying racism includes the idea that humans can be subdivided into distinct groups that are different due to their social behavior and their innate capacities, as well as the idea that they can be ranked as inferior or superior. Historical examples of institutional racism include the Holocaust, the apartheid regime in South Africa and segregation in the United States, slavery in Latin America. Racism was an aspect of the social organization of many colonial states and empires. While the concepts of race and ethnicity are considered to be separate in contemporary social science, the two terms have a long history of equivalence in both popular usage and older social science literature. "Ethnicity" is used in a sense close to one traditionally attributed to "race": the division of human groups based on qualities assumed to be essential or innate to the group.
Therefore and racial discrimination are used to describe discrimination on an ethnic or cultural basis, independent of whether these differences are described as racial. According to a United Nations convention on racial discrimination, there is no distinction between the terms "racial" and "ethnic" discrimination; the UN convention further concludes that superiority based on racial differentiation is scientifically false, morally condemnable unjust and dangerous. It declared that there is no justification for racial discrimination, anywhere, in theory or in practice. Racist ideology can manifest in many aspects of social life. Racism can be present in social actions, practices, or political systems that support the expression of prejudice or aversion in discriminatory practices or laws. Associated social actions may include nativism, otherness, hierarchical ranking and related social phenomena. In the 19th century, many scientists subscribed to the belief that the human population can be divided into races.
The term racism is a noun describing the state of being racist, i.e. subscribing to the belief that the human population can or should be classified into races with differential abilities and dispositions, which in turn may motivate a political ideology in which rights and privileges are differentially distributed based on racial categories. The origin of the root word "race" is not clear. Linguists agree that it came to the English language from Middle French, but there is no such agreement on how it came into Latin-based languages. A recent proposal is that it derives from the Arabic ra's, which means "head, origin" or the Hebrew rosh, which has a similar meaning. Early race theorists held the view that some races were inferior to others and they believed that the differential treatment of races was justified; these early theories guided pseudo-scientific research assumptions. Today, most biologists and sociologists reject a taxonomy of races in favor of more specific and/or empirically verifiable criteria, such as geography, ethnicity, or a history of endogamy.
To date, there is little evidence in human genome research which indicates that race can be defined in such a way as to be useful in determining a genetic classification of humans. An entry in the Oxford English Dictionary defines racialism as "n earlier term than racism, but now superseded by it", cites it in a 1902 quote; the revised Oxford English Dictionary cites the shortened term "racism" in a quote from the following year, 1903. It was first defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as "he theory that distinctive human characteristics and abilities are determined by race". By the end of World War II, racism had acquired the same supremacist connotations associated with racialism: racism now implied racial discrimination, racial supremacism, a harmful intent; as its history indicates, the popular use of the word racism is recent. The word came into widespread usage in the Western world in the 1930s, when it was used to describe the social and political ideology of Nazism, which saw "race" as a given political unit.
It is agreed that racism existed before the coinage of the word, but there is not a wide agreement on a single definition of what racism is and what it is not. Today, some scholars of racism prefer to use the concept in the plural racisms, in order to emphasize its many different forms that do not fall under a single definition, they argue that different forms of racism have characterized different historical periods and geographical areas. Garner summarizes different existing definitions of racism and identifies three common elements contained in those definitions of racism. First, a historical, hierarchical power relationship between groups. Though many countries around the globe have passed laws related to race and discrimination, the first significant international human rights instrument developed by the United Nations
Royal Geographical Society
The Royal Geographical Society is the UK's learned society and professional body for geography, founded in 1830 for the advancement of geographical sciences. Today, it is the leading centre for geographers and geographical learning; the Society has over 16,500 members and its work reaches millions of people each year through publications, research groups and lectures. The Society was founded in 1830 under the name Geographical Society of London as an institution to promote the'advancement of geographical science', it absorbed the older African Association, founded by Sir Joseph Banks in 1788, as well as the Raleigh Club and the Palestine Association. Like many learned societies, it had started as a dining club in London, where select members held informal dinner debates on current scientific issues and ideas. Founding members of the Society included Sir John Barrow, Sir John Franklin and Sir Francis Beaufort. Under the patronage of King William IV it became known as The Royal Geographical Society and was granted its Royal Charter under Queen Victoria in 1859.
From 1830 to 1840 the RGS met in the rooms of the Horticultural Society in Regent Street and from 1854 -1870 at 15 Whitehall Place, London. In 1870, the Society found a home when it moved to 1 Savile Row, London – an address that became associated with adventure and travel; the Society used a lecture theatre in Burlington Gardens, London, lent to it by the Civil Service Commission. However, the arrangements were thought to be rather squalid. A new impetus was given to the Society's affairs in 1911, with the election of Earl Curzon, the former Viceroy of India, as the Society's President; the premises in Savile Row were sold and the present site, Lowther Lodge in Kensington Gore, was purchased for £100,000 and opened for use in April 1913. In the same year the Society's ban on women was lifted. Lowther Lodge was built in 1874 for the Hon William Lowther by Norman Shaw, one of the most outstanding domestic architects of his day. Extensions to the east wing were added in 1929, included the New Map Room and the 750 seat Lecture Theatre.
The extension was formally opened by HRH the Duke of York at the Centenary Celebrations on 21 October 1930. The history of the Society was allied for many of its earlier years with'colonial' exploration in Africa, the Indian subcontinent, the polar regions, central Asia especially, it has been a key associate and supporter of many notable explorers and expeditions, including those of Darwin, Stanley, Shackleton and Hillary. The early history of the Society is inter-linked with the history of British Geography and discovery. Information, maps and knowledge gathered on expeditions was sent to the RGS, making up its now unique geographical collections; the Society published its first journal in 1831 and from 1855, accounts of meetings and other matters were published in the Society Proceedings. In 1893, this was replaced by The Geographical Journal, still published today; the Society was pivotal in establishing Geography as a teaching and research discipline in British universities, funded the first Geography positions in the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge.
With the advent of a more systematic study of geography, the Institute of British Geographers was formed in 1933, by some academic Society fellows, including Andrew Charles O'Dell, as a sister body to the Society. Its activities included organising conferences, field trips and specialist research groups and publishing the journal, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers; the RGS and IBG co-existed for 60 years until 1992. In 1994, members were balloted and the merger agreed. In January 1995, the new Royal Geographical Society was formed; the Society works together with other existing bodies serving the geographical community, in particular the Geographical Association and the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. In 2004, The Society's historical Collections relating to scientific exploration and research, which are of national and international importance, were opened to the public for the first time. In the same year, a new category of membership was introduced to widen access for people with a general interest in geography.
The new Foyle Reading Room and glass Pavilion exhibition space were opened to the public in 2004 – unlocking the Society intellectually and physically for the 21st century. For example, in 2012 the RGS held an exhibition, in the glass Pavilion, of photographs taken by Herbert Ponting on Captain Robert Falcon Scott's expedition to the South Pole in 1912; the society is governed by its board of trustees called the council, chaired by its president. The members of council and the president are elected from its fellowship; the council consists of 36 members, 22 of which are elected by fellows and serve for a three-year term. In addition to the elected trustees, there are honorary members; the society has five specialist committees that it derives advice from Education Committee Research Committee Expedition and Fieldwork Committee Information Resources Committee Finance Committee Frederick John Robinson, 1st Viscount Goderich The Earl of Ripon Sir George Murray Sir Roderick Murchison Sir Henry Creswicke Rawlinson Sir Clements Robert Markham Sir George Taubman Goldie Major Leonard Darwin Earl Curzon of Kedleston Douglas Freshfield (1914–1917
England is a country, part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to Scotland to the north-northwest; the Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south; the country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight. The area now called England was first inhabited by modern humans during the Upper Palaeolithic period, but takes its name from the Angles, a Germanic tribe deriving its name from the Anglia peninsula, who settled during the 5th and 6th centuries. England became a unified state in the 10th century, since the Age of Discovery, which began during the 15th century, has had a significant cultural and legal impact on the wider world; the English language, the Anglican Church, English law – the basis for the common law legal systems of many other countries around the world – developed in England, the country's parliamentary system of government has been adopted by other nations.
The Industrial Revolution began in 18th-century England, transforming its society into the world's first industrialised nation. England's terrain is chiefly low hills and plains in central and southern England. However, there is upland and mountainous terrain in the west; the capital is London, which has the largest metropolitan area in both the United Kingdom and the European Union. England's population of over 55 million comprises 84% of the population of the United Kingdom concentrated around London, the South East, conurbations in the Midlands, the North West, the North East, Yorkshire, which each developed as major industrial regions during the 19th century; the Kingdom of England – which after 1535 included Wales – ceased being a separate sovereign state on 1 May 1707, when the Acts of Union put into effect the terms agreed in the Treaty of Union the previous year, resulting in a political union with the Kingdom of Scotland to create the Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1801, Great Britain was united with the Kingdom of Ireland to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
In 1922 the Irish Free State seceded from the United Kingdom, leading to the latter being renamed the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The name "England" is derived from the Old English name Englaland, which means "land of the Angles"; the Angles were one of the Germanic tribes that settled in Great Britain during the Early Middle Ages. The Angles came from the Anglia peninsula in the Bay of Kiel area of the Baltic Sea; the earliest recorded use of the term, as "Engla londe", is in the late-ninth-century translation into Old English of Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People. The term was used in a different sense to the modern one, meaning "the land inhabited by the English", it included English people in what is now south-east Scotland but was part of the English kingdom of Northumbria; the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle recorded that the Domesday Book of 1086 covered the whole of England, meaning the English kingdom, but a few years the Chronicle stated that King Malcolm III went "out of Scotlande into Lothian in Englaland", thus using it in the more ancient sense.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, its modern spelling was first used in 1538. The earliest attested reference to the Angles occurs in the 1st-century work by Tacitus, Germania, in which the Latin word Anglii is used; the etymology of the tribal name itself is disputed by scholars. How and why a term derived from the name of a tribe, less significant than others, such as the Saxons, came to be used for the entire country and its people is not known, but it seems this is related to the custom of calling the Germanic people in Britain Angli Saxones or English Saxons to distinguish them from continental Saxons of Old Saxony between the Weser and Eider rivers in Northern Germany. In Scottish Gaelic, another language which developed on the island of Great Britain, the Saxon tribe gave their name to the word for England. An alternative name for England is Albion; the name Albion referred to the entire island of Great Britain. The nominally earliest record of the name appears in the Aristotelian Corpus the 4th-century BC De Mundo: "Beyond the Pillars of Hercules is the ocean that flows round the earth.
In it are two large islands called Britannia. But modern scholarly consensus ascribes De Mundo not to Aristotle but to Pseudo-Aristotle, i.e. it was written in the Graeco-Roman period or afterwards. The word Albion or insula Albionum has two possible origins, it either derives from a cognate of the Latin albus meaning white, a reference to the white cliffs of Dover or from the phrase the "island of the Albiones" in the now lost Massaliote Periplus, attested through Avienus' Ora Maritima to which the former served as a source. Albion is now applied to England in a more poetic capacity. Another romantic name for England is Loegria, related to the Welsh word for England and made popular by its use in Arthurian legend; the earliest known evidence of human presence in the area now known as England was that of Homo antecessor, dating to approximate
Torsten Hägerstrand was a Swedish geographer. He is known for his work on cultural diffusion and time geography. A native and resident of Sweden, Hägerstrand was a professor of geography at Lund University, where he received his doctorate in 1953, his doctoral research was on cultural diffusion. His research has helped to make Sweden, Lund, a major center of innovative work in cultural geography, he influenced the practice of spatial planning in Sweden through his students. Hägerstrand's father was a teacher at the family lived at the school. Hägerstrand recalled that his early education was based on the pedagogical ideas of Swiss educator Johann Pestalozzi. Several of Hägerstrand's students speculated that his holistic and visionary thinking was rooted in his early education: He was taught local geography and folklore at home in the Pestalozzi tradition, being introduced at that time. Cartography, geology and agronomy were all interrelated parts of a more holistic understanding of processes within a spatial area.
To start with, children learned about their immediate environment about the village, the whole district. As a pupil of Hägerstrand, it is easy for me to recognize parts of this tradition which became what we today would refer to as an'integrative perspective'. Hägerstrand entered Lund University in 1937, his 1953 doctoral thesis Innovation Diffusion as a Spatial Process gained fame for its innovative use of Monte Carlo simulation of demographic development. It showed how dynamic, incremental simulation of spatial processes could be used at the spatial scale of the individual as well as large spatial aggregates. Forty years geographer Andrew Cliff remarked on the foresight of Hägerstrand's methodology: "Bearing in mind that much of the research upon which the book is based dates from a time when computers were nonexistent, let alone used by geographers, it is remarkable that the simulation methodology, so critically dependent upon computing power should have been contemplated."Hägerstrand's research was aided by developments at Lund University, notably the establishment of the Siffermaskinen i Lund, one of Sweden's first computers.
Hägerstrand noted that the Swedish computer scientist Carl-Erik Fröberg, Hägerstrand's "school-mate since secondary school", had introduced him to the Monte Carlo method that would define his doctoral thesis, following a trip by Fröberg and other young Swedish scientists to the United States, a trip, financed by the Swedish government's project to build its own computer. In 1969, he presented a paper titled "What about People in Regional Science?" to the European Congress of the Regional Science Association in Copenhagen, Denmark. This paper, published in 1970, developed two concepts: The need to study the individual in order to understand social and group practices. Modern cultural geographers now study everyday practices on an individualistic basis, in order to understand larger scale patterns; the study of just groups creates hides the truth. A link between space and time, poorly developed. Social scientists had treated time as a relevant but external factor to spatial features. Hägerstrand's early work on innovation diffusion made him realise that the two, though separate, were not independent of each other.
Hägerstrand's initial work was quantitative, important as the discipline of geography was, when he published his first paper in 1942, a descriptive subject. In the 1950s he was a pioneer of geocoding statistical primary data, he developed models and statistical techniques, such as the time–space cube and time–space prism, which became important in the development of geographic information systems that process and visualize movement data. His work informed the likes of Allan Pred and Nigel Thrift, who helped take it to the English speaking world. Hägerstrand's work contributed to the introduction of humanistic thought into geography, which led to the development of critical geography. While his early work was quantitative, Hägerstrand's work paid closer attention to notions of embodiment and emotion. Still, his methods were critiqued by feminist geographer Gillian Rose, who claimed that his models showed a masculine and falsely-ordered view of the world. More recent geographers have tried to combine time geography with the qualitative research and affective phenomenology of feminist geography.
Development of Hägerstrand's work has continued to form part of the basis for non-representational theory, a reappraisal of his work by new generations of social scientists and biologists means that he remains an influential thinker today. In 2005, Nigel Thrift summarized five benefits of Hägerstrand's time geography for contemporary social science: First, it provides a sense of concreteness, of the power of'thereness', it does so in a way—visually—that is still the preserve of too few social theorists. All those intricate diagrams were, in part, an attempt to describe the pragmatics of events, a theme which has now, in the work of writers like Deleuze, become fashionable in the social sciences and humanities but, at the time at which Hägerstrand was working, tended to be restricted to the field of philosophy, except for the work of social interactionists and ethnomethodologists, very imperfectly understood by other than a small coterie of enthusiasts. Secondly, Hägerstrand's work was an at
Cultural ecology is the study of human adaptations to social and physical environments. Human adaptation refers to both biological and cultural processes that enable a population to survive and reproduce within a given or changing environment; this may be synchronically. The central argument is that the natural environment, in small scale or subsistence societies dependent in part upon it, is a major contributor to social organization and other human institutions. In the academic realm, when combined with study of political economy, the study of economies as polities, it becomes political ecology, another academic subfield, it helps interrogate historical events like the Easter Island Syndrome. Anthropologist Julian Steward coined the term, envisioning cultural ecology as a methodology for understanding how humans adapt to such a wide variety of environments. In his Theory of Culture Change: The Methodology of Multilinear Evolution, cultural ecology represents the "ways in which culture change is induced by adaptation to the environment."
A key point is that any particular human adaptation is in part inherited and involves the technologies and knowledge that allow people to live in an environment. This means that while the environment influences the character of human adaptation, it does not determine it. In this way, Steward wisely separated the vagaries of the environment from the inner workings of a culture that occupied a given environment. Viewed over the long term, this means that environment and culture are on more or less separate evolutionary tracks and that the ability of one to influence the other is dependent on how each is structured, it is this assertion - that the physical and biological environment affects culture - that has proved controversial, because it implies an element of environmental determinism over human actions, which some social scientists find problematic those writing from a Marxist perspective. Cultural ecology recognizes that ecological locale plays a significant role in shaping the cultures of a region.
Steward's method was to: Document the technologies and methods used to exploit the environment to get a living from it. Look at patterns of human behavior/culture associated with using the environment. Assess how much these patterns of behavior influenced other aspects of culture. Steward's concept of cultural ecology became widespread among anthropologists and archaeologists of the mid-20th century, though they would be critiqued for their environmental determinism. Cultural ecology was one of the central tenets and driving factors in the development of processual archaeology in the 1960s, as archaeologists understood cultural change through the framework of technology and its effects on environmental adaptation. Cultural ecology as developed by Steward is a major subdiscipline of anthropology, it derives from the work of Franz Boas and has branched out to cover a number of aspects of human society, in particular the distribution of wealth and power in a society, how that affects such behaviour as hoarding or gifting.
One 2000s-era conception of cultural ecology is as a general theory that regards ecology as a paradigm not only for the natural and human sciences, but for cultural studies as well. In his Die Ökologie des Wissens, Peter Finke explains that this theory brings together the various cultures of knowledge that have evolved in history, that have been separated into more and more specialized disciplines and subdisciplines in the evolution of modern science. In this view, cultural ecology considers the sphere of human culture not as separate from but as interdependent with and transfused by ecological processes and natural energy cycles. At the same time, it recognizes the relative independence and self-reflexive dynamics of cultural processes; as the dependency of culture on nature, the ineradicable presence of nature in culture, are gaining interdisciplinary attention, the difference between cultural evolution and natural evolution is acknowledged by cultural ecologists. Rather than genetic laws and communication have become major driving forces of cultural evolution.
Thus, causal deterministic laws do not apply to culture in a strict sense, but there are productive analogies that can be drawn between ecological and cultural processes. Gregory Bateson was the first to draw such analogies in his project of an Ecology of Mind, based on general principles of complex dynamic life processes, e.g. the concept of feedback loops, which he saw as operating both between the mind and the world and within the mind itself. Bateson thinks of the mind neither as an autonomous metaphysical force nor as a mere neurological function of the brain, but as a "dehierarchized concept of a mutual dependency between the organism and its environment and object, culture and nature", thus as "a synonym for a cybernetic system of information circuits that are relevant for the survival of the species.". Finke fuses these ideas with concepts from systems theory, he describes the various sections and subsystems of society as'cultural ecosystems' with thei