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Why is it called
Latin America?
The languages of early
explorers (Spain & Portugal)
have Latin origins as well as the
language used by the Catholic
Church was Latin.
Includes: Central America, Caribbean, & South America
Mexico to southern Argentina (tip is Tierra del Fuego”land of Fire”)
37 countries make-up Latin
America largest: Mexico,
Brazil, & Argentina
Latin America is twice the size
of the United States
2/3 of Latin America lies within
the tropics
Middle America
Sierra Madres- Mother
Ranges
Many volcanoes- 40+
eruptions in the past 20
years, along the western
side of Central America
Plains are along both coasts.
Lake Nicaragua- largest in Middle America
Rivers- none of the rivers are navigable for ships
Caribbean Islands
Islands are the result of
a mountain chain and
volcanic activity along the
boundary of the
Caribbean Plate and the
North American Plate.
Divided into 3 main groups
Bahamas- 2000 pieces of land, 700 big enough to be called
islands, only 20 inhabited
Lesser Antilles- arc towards South America, contain
volcanoes
Greater Antilles (4 big islands)- mountains in center, Cuba,
Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, Jamaica
South America
Andes Mountains- 4,000 miles long- longest
Plains- Llanos, Pampas, Cerrado- excellent areas for
farming
Major River Systems- Amazon, Orinoco, Parana
Numerous natural
resources- oil,
natural gas, gold,
silver, aluminum
ore, hydroelectric
power, rain forest
products
avocado
banana
grapefruit
lemon
lime
mango
orange
papaya
pineapple
plantain
sweet potato
black pepper
cayenne
chili pepper
chocolate / cocoa (products)
cinnamon
cloves
ginger
vanilla
cashew nuts
coconut
coffee
rubber
chicle (chewing gum)
ipecac
quinine
Farming
Slash and Burn- today
the method is still
used and the rain
forest is being
destroyed
Terraced farminggrowing crops on
mountain sides, look
like steps
Urbanization
People moving into cities faster than the cities can handle
and therefore slums and shanty towns are created on the
outskirts of the city
Tourism
pros- brings in money, provides
jobs
cons- resort owners live
elsewhere & profits are taken,
large gap between rich tourist and
poor residents