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Harshman, Robert and Christine Hannell

Toronto, Wiley, c1985. 398pp, paperbound boards, $23.96, ISBN 0-471-79796-0. CIP

Grades 10-12
Reviewed by Alma Webster

Volume 13 Number 5
1985 September

Designed as a secondary level social studies text the authors summarize its purpose thus: "... by examining the world economics, industry, technology, transportation, energy, global lifestyles and leisure, mass media, pollution, conservation, and prospects for the future (students) will come to understand how humans are influenced by their physical environments and how the development of human cultures has affected the world around them." While this is a tall order, the authors are very successful in presenting such a wide variety of topics in a concise, interesting manner. Valuable in achieving this aim are the many thought-provoking activities, questions, and problems.

The authors are both teachers in secondary schools in Mississauga and Hamilton and the book is presumably based on actual teaching experiences. The preface thanks nine reviewers, all teachers, with representation from Newfoundland, Manitoba, and Alberta, as well as Ontario.

The contents are arranged into five sections: "Introduction," "Economic Geography," "Cultural Geography," "The Impact of Economic and Cultural Geography on the Environment," and "The Future." The seven-page table of contents provides an excellent summary delineating the major and minor topics and including references to the case studies.

The book presents a pleasing format, with good paper, clear readable print, and copious illustrations. The latter are in black and white or a subdued red and white. Consisting of photographs, charts, graphs, tables, and maps, they are truly outstanding. All are very clear, easily interpreted, and used to explain the commentary or for student interpretation. They are appropriately placed and numbered for easy use. Credit for the illustrations is given, chapter by chapter at the end of the book. Following the text there is an eighteen-page glossary of 116 terms. In addition to the meaning an example is given, usually a sentence, but occasionally a reference to a sentence. The book is well indexed by topic, subdivision, and illustration.

Designed as a secondary school text, it can be used by the average senior high school student. In a very few cases the posed questions seem a little preposterous. For example, "What should the people in Ghana do to help solve this problem?" or, "What five suggestions could you make that might help the U.K. to improve its economy?" Due to the brevity of many of the topics students will need to use more-in-depth works for such subjects as world economic systems, communism, the industrial revolution, and world religions. The research problems at the end of each chapter intend that the students use the library, and references are frequently made to the use of a variety of economic and statistical atlases. Even if not used as the approved text, teachers and librarians will find this a very useful book.

Alma Webster, Edmonton, Alta.
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