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Anthropological and Philosophical Approach in Regional Geography

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Regional geography and general anthropology have been closely related branches of knowledge since their earliest beginnings. Both look for a general view and synthetic approach, with such notions in common as: species, culture, religion, civilization, society, evolution, and differentiated surroundings. For anthropology the subject is human biocultural evolution on Earth, while for geography it is the Earth, the living surface of which, from a particular moment in time, undergoes the process of population and “cultivation” by the human species. Anthropology has been more interested in what happens to human beings in their response to differently conditioned environments, where other people are also one of the factors. This resulted first in the concept of different races, substituted next by the notion of population, and different cultures. Because of various methods used to investigate these aspects, anthropology was divided into physical (biological) and cultural (social). But at the same time, the final aim of anthropological research has not been totally lost and still seeks to discover the universal rules connected with human nature, culture, and the course of evolution. Therefore, one can hear the voice of anthropologists treat anthropology as one discipline, which at a general level of interpretation should perceive joined aspects, biological and cultural (Wierciński 1982).

On the other hand, geography is more interested in what happens to the earthly environment, physically and especially as a result of recent human cultural activity, by the effect of which the surface of the Earth is differentiated into regions, zones, countries, eco-systems, and so on. It seems today that the geographical point of view stops at the level of spatial differentiation of a set of phenomena, occasionally presented on maps and computing programs. The situation is nowadays less optimistic, if one considers how wide a choice of phenomena taking place on the Earth stands in front of geographers for potential description. The pace of various cultural changes and their impact on the landscape are high enough to frighten not only geographers.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2011

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