AP Human Geography : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP Human Geography

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

The cultural hearth of Islam is found in __________.

Possible Answers:

Lebanon

Syria

Iraq

Saudi Arabia

Iran

Correct answer:

Saudi Arabia

Explanation:

Although all of these nations have an Islamic majority, the question asks which of them is the “cultural hearth.” A “cultural hearth” is a point from which a widespread culture originates. Islamic culture is widespread around North Africa and the Middle East - and can be found in many other areas of the world as well. But, the point of origin for this culture is Mecca and Medina, two cities found in modern-day Saudi Arabia.

Example Question #2 : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

Which of these is not considered a macro-cultural region of Asia?

Possible Answers:

Sino-Japanese

Central Steppe

Indic

Southeast Asian

Islamic

Correct answer:

Central Steppe

Explanation:

All of these are considered macro-cultural regions of Asia except “Central Steppe.” The Central Steppe is a term that could theoretically be used to describe the Great Plains, or “steppes,” of Central Asia (such as Mongolia), but most of this territory falls under the broad category of “Sino-Japanese.”

Example Question #3 : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

Africa is fairly evenly divided between which two macro-cultural regions?

Possible Answers:

Islamic and Sub-Saharan African

Saharan and Sub-Saharan African

European and Sub-Saharan African

Islamic and Christian

Indic and Slavic

Correct answer:

Islamic and Sub-Saharan African

Explanation:

The continent of Africa is fairly evenly divided between Islamic (in the North of the continent) and Sub-Saharan African. The Islamic macro-cultural region also includes much of the Middle East. Although it is true that the continent of Africa is divided between a Muslim dominated north and a Christian dominated south, “Christian” is not the name of a macro-cultural region that is frequently used by cultural geographers.

Example Question #4 : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

The cultural geographic theory known as “Conquest Theory” is intended to explain __________.

Possible Answers:

the spread of the English language around the world

the importance of Latin in academic circles

the cultural impact of the United States in the twentieth century

the rise of Christianity and Islam

the dominance of the Indo-European language family

Correct answer:

the dominance of the Indo-European language family

Explanation:

The “Conquest Theory” was developed to explain the dominance of the Indo-European language family. More than half of the world’s population speaks some form of an Indo-European language. According to the Conquest Theory this is because the original speakers of this language group spread westward, rapidly overpowering previous inhabitants of much of Europe and Asia. The people of this region then, several hundred years, spread outwards around the world conquering new territories and spreading their languages to new continents.

Example Question #5 : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

In which of these regions is Slavic culture predominantly found?

Possible Answers:

Western Europe and North Africa

East Asia and South Asia

Eastern Europe and Russia

Southern Europe and the Middle East

North America and the Caribbean

Correct answer:

Eastern Europe and Russia

Explanation:

Some cultural geographers divide the world into a series of macro-cultural regions. The “Slavic” culture is found predominantly in Eastern Europe and Russia. Other "macro-cultural" regions include Anglo-America, Western Europe, South Asia, and East Asia.

Example Question #6 : Cultural & Vernacular Regions

San Francisco's Chinatown, a centralized Chinese community within the city, is an example of a/an __________.

Possible Answers:

gendered space

forced segregation

gentrified neighborhood

ethnic island

Correct answer:

ethnic island

Explanation:

An ethnic island or enclave is an area predominantly populated by a single ethnicity, sometimes in contrast to a city's overall demographic makeup. Forced segregation would mean that populations are legally separated, while a gendered space would divide along gender lines, rather than ethnic or cultural ones.

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