The Middle East Exam Review (Part I) By: Mr. Mora The Middle East Essential Points • This region is one of the original culture hearths – a source region for cultural innovations, including agriculture, that subsequently diffuse to other parts of world – Agriculture – Written language – Judaism, Christianity, Islam • Deserts, Arabs, Oil, Muslims, and geopolitical turmoil are common. • Development of petroleum industry has had large impact on the region – OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) – member countries profoundly influence global prices and production targets for petroleum • The region is at an intersection of three continents (Africa/Asia/Europe) and home to the historically important cities of Jerusalem and Istanbul. • Islamic fundamentalism – this aspect of Islam that advocates return to more traditional practices, calls for merger of civil and religious authority, and challenges encroachment of global popular culture Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree, Lewis, Price, Wyckoff 3 Mesopotamia Between 3000 b.c.e. and 300 b.c.e. civilizations thrived in Mesopotamia, a large region centered between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in modern-day Iraq. Main civilizations were the Sumerians (3000–2000 b.c.e.), the Akkadians (2350–2218 b.c.e.), the Babylonians (1894–1595 b.c.e.), the Assyrians (1380–612 b.c.e.), and the Persians (550–330 b.c.e.). Laid the foundation for customs that would dominate later European culture Mesopotamia, Cont. • Cuneiform is a system of writing first developed by the ancient Sumerians of Mesopotamia c. 3500-3000 BCE. It is considered the most significant among the many cultural contributions of the Sumerians and the greatest among those of the Sumerian city of Uruk which advanced the writing of cuneiform c. 3200 BCE. Domestication: Training of animals and raising plants to be useful for humans. The Code of Hammurabi • The Code of Hammurabi is a well-preserved Babylonian law code of ancient Mesopotamia, dating back to about 1754 BC. It is one of the oldest deciphered writings of significant length in the world. “An eye for an eye” Hammurabi was a Babylonian king. Cultural Coherence and Diversity: Signatures of Complexity • Patterns of Religion – Hearth of the Judeo-Christian Tradition • Jews and Christians trace their roots to the eastern Mediterranean • Monotheism – belief in one God – The Emergence of Islam • Theocratic state – one in which religious leaders (ayatollahs) guide policy; Iran is an example Theocracy: Government where all laws are based on religious morals. Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree, Lewis, Price, Wyckoff 9 Quran • The Quran is the central religious text of Islam, which Muslims believe to be a revelation from God. It is widely regarded as the finest piece of literature in the Arabic language. Quranic chapters are called suras and verses, ayahs Economic and Social Development: Lands of Wealth and Poverty • The Geography of Fossil Fuels • Oil unevenly distributed in the area – Saudi Arabia, Iran, U.A.E., Libya, Algeria contribute significantly to oil production, while Morocco and Sudan have few developed petroleum reserves – This region has 7% of the world’s population; holds 68% of the world’s proven petroleum reserves • Regional Economic Patterns – Higher-Income Oil Exporters – Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, U.A.E. – Cultural landscape reshaped because of oil wealth – Not all benefit – rural Shiite Muslims and foreign workers Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree, Lewis, Price, Wyckoff 11 Hieroglyphics • Egyptian hieroglyphs were a formal writing system used by the ancient Egyptians that combined logographic and alphabetic elements. Egyptians used cursive hieroglyphs for religious literature on papyrus and wood. Yahweh • Yahweh is the name of the god of the ancient Hebrews composed of four Hebrew consonants (YHWH, known as the Tetragrammaton) which the prophet Moses is said to have revealed to his people. The Arab Spring • Within days, protests started popping up across the country, calling upon President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and his regime to step down. About a month later, he fled. The momentum in Tunisia set off uprisings across the Middle East that became known as the Arab Spring (2010). • Social media, such as Facebook, was used extensively and ultimately helped to unite the people to exact change in their governments. Judaic Worship • The synagogue is the Jewish equivalent of a church, more or less. It is the center of the Jewish religious community: a place of prayer, study and education, social and charitable work, as well as a social center. Monotheism • Judaism, Islam, and Christianity are all monotheistic religions, which means that they all worship a single deity. Climate Map of Southwest Asia & N Africa (Fig. 7.7) Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree, Lewis, Price, Wyckoff 18 The Eastern Mediterranean North Africa Exam Review (Part II) North Africa Strait of Gibraltar links the Mediterranean Sea with the Atlantic Ocean **Memorize the countries in North Africa** The Sahara Desert World’s largest desert (located in North Africa) The Sahel • The Sahel is the narrow, flat, semi-arid plain located between the Sahara and the southern Sudanian savannas. Nile River • • • The only river in the world that constantly flows north. Central to early Egyptian civilization. Longest river by mileage in the entire world. Globalization & Diversity: Rowntree, Lewis, Price, Wyckoff 24 Human Geography of North Africa North Africa Society and Culture Today •The Muslim religion is the dominant faith in North Africa. •Arabic is the dominant language in the region, with French used in some areas as a result of colonization (e.g. Algiers, Morocco). Arab Spring Movement (2010-2011) • The Arab Spring was a series of anti-government protests, uprisings and armed rebellions that spread across the Middle East in early 2011. Led to new governments being elected in Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia. (Started in Tunisia).