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ellsworth huntington (1876–1947)

ellsworth huntington was a professor at yale and one of the early giants of the discipline of

geog hy in the united states. he was a student of william morris davis at yale and

conducted asian fieldwork in the early 20th century. he was one of the first scholars to recognize

the imprint of climate change in the ruins of ancient societies and be e the leading

proponent of environmental determinism. his premise was that climate was the root

cause of the rise and fall of civilizations. far from being known only in academic circles, huntington’s

engaging writing style and prodigious production made him a popular author. his

seminal books included the pulse of asia, civilization and climate and mainsprings of civilization.

in retrospect, they were based on some scholarship and many grand generalizations that are

simplistic and sometimes racist. for instance, he believed that middle latitude storminess

“energized” populations and led to the progress of civilizations in western europe and north

america while the lack of such storminess inhibited african development. huntington’s popularity

instigated a backlash among geog hers to the extent that his ideas were castigated

and provided fuel for the development of social and cultural geog hy, which took a more

complex view of the interrelations between nature and humans.


منبع : encyclopedia of geog hy terms, themes, and concepts