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American Geography and GeographersToward Geographical Science$
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Geoffrey J. Martin

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780195336023

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195336023.001.0001

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The Quest for Definition Continued ca. 1920–1970

The Quest for Definition Continued ca. 1920–1970

(p.1055) 18 The Quest for Definition Continued ca. 1920–1970
American Geography and Geographers

Geoffrey Martin

Oxford University Press

With World War I settled by peace treaties, political geography attached itself to the geographic corpus alongside Davisian physiography, ontography, and what were thought to be resultant determinisms. American geographers began to transfer their affections from German to French geography. The Midwest emerged as a bastion of American geography with increasing emphasis on fieldwork and definition of the field. C. O. Sauer and J. B. Leighly traveled to Berkeley, there to establish the study of cultural geography. Perhaps definition was advanced by Bowman’s Geography in Relation to the Social Sciences (1934) and Hartshorne’s The Nature of Geography (1939) and its companion, Perspective on the Nature of Geography (1959). World War II (1939–1945) shifted thought toward economic and political geography, and in the postwar period there emerged a new genre of quantitative study which would change the face of traditional geography.

Keywords:   Brunhes, La Blache, Febvre and possibilism, regions, Midwest “takeover,” the syllabus, definitions, fractional code symbol

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