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Pakistan and Bangladesh Main Ideas Pakistan and Bangladesh
are Muslim countries formedas a result of the partition ofBritish India.
Both Pakistan andBangladesh have largepopulations and face greateconomic challenges.
Places & TermsIndus Valley civilization
Connect to the Issuesextreme weatherBangladesh is severely affectedby seasonal monsoons andcyclones.
PLACE The ruins of Mohenjo-Daro, one of the great cities of the ancient Indus Valleycivilization, lie on the IndusRiver in south-central Pakistan.
A HUMAN PERSPECTIVE Some workers in the port of Chittagong,Bangladesh, have an unusual job. They are ship breakers. When ocean-going ships reach the end of their useful life, they take their last voyageto Chittagong. There, ship breakers wait on the beach with sledgeham-mers, crowbars, torches, and wrenches. They attack each ship, tearing itapart piece by piece. Within weeks, they can dismantle a ship. Then,they sell its scrap metal for recycling purposes. The job doesnt pay verywell, but it is necessary work for the shipping industry, the workers, andthe Bangladeshi economy.
New Countries, Ancient Lands Like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh are young countries with anancient history and with rapidly growing populations. They, too, arestriving to make their way in the modern world.
EARLY HISTORY The largest of the worlds first civilizations arose inwhat is now Pakistan. The Indus Valley civilization began around 2500B.C. It featured well-planned cities like Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro,which had brick buildings (shown below) and sophisticated sanitationsystems. The map on page 544 depicts the extent of the civilization atthe height of its power. It fell around 1500 B.C., and the Aryans invadedsoon after. Later on, the Mauryan, Gupta, and Mughal empires ruled theterritory that included modern Pakistan and Bangladesh. The Britishwere the next to take control of the region.
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PARTITION AND WAR The end of British rule in 1947 brought thepartition, or division, of British India. Two new countries were createdIndia (predominantly Hindu) and mainly Muslim Pakistan (separatedinto West Pakistan and East Pakistan). Partition led to much violencebetween Muslims and Hindus. About one million people died in theconflict. Another 10 million fled across national borders. Muslims inIndia moved to Pakistan, while Hindus in Pakistan crossed into India.
West Pakistan and East Pakistan shared a religious bond, but ethnicdifferences and their 1,100-mile separation eventually drove themapart. The people of East Pakistan began to call for their own state. Butthe government in West Pakistan opposed such a move. Civil war brokeout in 1971. That year, with help from India, East Pakistan won its inde-pendence as Bangladesh.
MILITARY RULE Both Pakistan and Bangladesh have had politicalstruggles since independence. Short periods of elected governmenthave alternated with long periods of military rule. Political corruptionhas plagued both countries. Pakistan also has fought several destructivewars with India over the territory of Kashmir. These wars are discussedin the Case Study in Chapter 26. In the 1990s, both Bangladesh andPakistan had women prime ministers, a rarity in the Muslim world.
Struggling Economies Pakistan and Bangladesh have large, rapidly growing populations. Infact, Bangladesh is the eighth most populous country in the world. Both
BackgroundBangladeshmeans land ofthe Bangla (orBengal)-speakingpeople.
Disputed by Indiaand Pakistan
Disputed by Indiaand China
Cease-fire lineDisputed by Indiaand Pakistan
0 250 500 kilometers
250 500 miles
Two-Point Equidistant Projection
0 250 500 kilometers
250 500 miles
Two-Point Equidistant Projection
The Indian Subcontinent
SKILLBUILDER: Interpreting MapsPLACE What had happened to the territory of Kashmir by 1972?
REGION What other changes had taken place in South Asia from 1947 to 1972?
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Economic Activity in Pakistan and Bangladesh
Agriculture Industry Services
*1999 Estimate, **1998 Estimate SOURCE: World Fact Book 2000
have economies that depend primarily on agriculture. As in India,per capita incomes are low, and much of the population lives in poverty.Bangladesh is one of the poorest countries in the world.
SUBSISTENCE FARMING Most farmers in Pakistan and Bangladeshwork small plots of land and struggle to grow enough crops to feed theirfamilies. The government has tried to help modernize farming methods,but many farmers continue to follow less productive traditional ways.Climate also hinders crop yields. Large areas of Pakistan are arid, whileBangladesh is severely affected by seasonal monsoons and cyclones.
The most productive farming areas of Pakistan are the irrigated por-tions of the Indus Valley. Here, farmers grow enough cotton and rice toallow for export. The farmers also produce substantial amounts ofwheat for domestic consumption. The moist delta lands of Bangladeshare ideal for the cultivation of rice, the countrys principal food crop.The main export crop is jute (a plant used in the production of rope, car-pets, and industrial-quality sacks). Fishing, mainly for freshwater fish,is also vital to the economy of Bangladesh.
SMALL INDUSTRY Neither Pakistan nor Bangladesh is highly indus-trialized. Most factories are relatively small and lack the capital,resources, and markets required for expansion. Even so, both countriesare trying to increase their industrial base. They have growing textileindustries that provide an important source of revenue and employ-ment. Both countries export cotton garments, and Pakistan also exportswool carpets and leather goods.
An important economic development has been the introduction of microcredit. This policy makes small loans available to poor entrepreneurs,people who start and build a business. Businesses that are too small to getloans from banks can often join forces to apply for these microloans.They then accept joint responsibility for repaying the loan. This program,begun in Bangladesh, has helped small businesses grow in South Asiaand has raised living standards for many producers, especially women.
SKILLBUILDER: Interpreting GraphsMAKING COMPARISONS Which of the two countries is more industrialized?
ANALYZING DATA In both Pakistan and Bangladesh, which economic sector employsthe most people?
Textiles in Pakistan
Fishing in Bangladesh
How do theeconomies ofPakistan andBangladeshcompare witheach other?
A. Answer Bothare populouscountries withstrugglingeconomies thatdepend on agri-culture. They aretrying to increasetheir industrialbase.
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REGION MostPakistanis are SunniMuslims. Here, menattend a Muslim prayerservice in a mosque inKarachi.
One Religion, Many Peoples Most of the people of Pakistan and Bangladeshare Muslims. In both countries, Islam is animportant unifying force. At the same time, eth-nic differences promote cultural diversity, partic-ularly in Pakistan.
ISLAMIC CULTURE Islam has long played animportant role in Pakistan and Bangladesh. Bothlands were key parts of the Muslim MughalEmpire that ruled the Indian subcontinent forcenturies, and their cultures bear the stamp ofIslam. The faithful observe Islamic customs.These include daily prayer and participation inRamadan, a month-long period of fasting fromsunrise to sunset. Mosques in both countries areoften large and impressive structures.
The two countries differ somewhat in theirIslamic practices, however. In general, Pakistan isstricter in imposing Islamic law on its citizens.For example, many Pakistanis follow the customof purdah, the seclusion of women. This customprevents women from having contact with menwho are not relatives. When women appear inpublic, they must wear veils. In Bangladesh, pur-dah is much less common and religious practicesare less strict.
ETHNIC DIVERSITY Pakistan is also more ethnically diverse thanBangladesh. Pakistan has five main ethnic groupsPunjabis, Sindhis,Pathans, Muhajirs, and Balochs. Each group has its own language. ThePunjabis make up more than half of the population. Each group has itsown regional origins within the country except for the Muhajirs, whomigrated from India as a result of the partition in 1947. To avoid favor-ing one region or group over another, the government chose Urduthelanguage of the Muhajirsas the national language. Today, mostPakistanis understand Urdu, even though they may use another lan-guage as their primary language.
In contrast, the people of Bangladesh are mainly Bengalis. Bengal isthe historic region that includes Bangladesh (once known as EastBengal) and the Indian state of West Bengal. Bengalis speak a languagebased on Sanskrit, the ancient Indo-Aryan language. Bangladesh alsohas a small population of Urdu-speaking Muslims and various non-Muslim tribal groups. About 10 percent of the population are Hindus.
Modern Life and Culture As in India, life in Pakistan and Bangladesh revolves around the family.Arranged marriages are common, and families tend to be large. Mostpeople live in small villages, in simple homes made of such materials assun-baked mud, bamboo, or wood. The large cities are busy places,
BackgroundPunjabi is theprincipal spokenlanguage ofPakistan becausethe majority ofPakistanis arePunjabis. Arabic isa secondarylanguage forMuslim Pakistanis.
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crowded with traffic and pedestrians. People in bothcountries enjoy sports such as soccer and cricket, andalso enjoy going to see movies.
A LOVE OF POETRY Poetry is a special interest in bothPakistan and Bangladesh, where the tradition of oral lit-erature is strong. Many Pakistanis memorize longpoems and can recite them by heart. Poets are popularfigures, and poetry readingscalled mushairascandraw thousands of people, much like a rock concertdoes in some countries.
The greatest literary figure in Bangladesh is the poetRabindranath Tagore, who won the Nobel Prize forLiterature in 1913. Although Tagore was born inCalcutta (now Kolkata), India, he wrote about theGanges and his Bengal homeland. Bangladesh adoptedhis song, My Golden Bengal, as its national anthem.
MUSIC AND DANCE Music and dance are also impor-tant forms of expression in Bangladesh and Pakistan.Both countries share music traditions similar to those ofIndia. Folk music of various types is popular in cities andin rural areas. Qawwalia form of devotional singingperformed by Muslims known as Sufisis famous notonly in South Asia but also in parts of Europe and theUnited States. Bangladesh also has a long tradition of folkdances, in which elaborately costumed dancers act outBengali myths, legends, and stories.
You have been reading about Pakistan andBangladesh, Indias western and eastern neighbors. Next,you will learn about Indias northern neighbors, Nepaland Bhutan.
Places & TermsIdentify each of thefollowing places andterms.
partition Kashmir microcredit entrepreneur Ramadan
Taking Notes PLACE Review the notes you tookfor this section.
How were the countries ofPakistan and Bangladesh formed?
What role does farming play inthe economies of Pakistan andBangladesh?
Main Ideas a. What have been some of
the problems for Pakistanand Bangladesh sincethey were formed?
b. What role does Islam play in Pakistan andBangladesh?
c. How would you describePakistans ethnic makeup?
Geographic ThinkingMaking Comparisons Howdo Pakistan and Bangladeshdiffer in their Islamicpractices? Think about:
the treatment of women how much of Pakistan
follows strict Islamic law
MAKING COMPARISONS Review the information about Islam on page 576. Then use theInternet or an encyclopedia to compare Islam in Pakistan or Bangladesh with a Muslim countryin either Africa or Southwest Asia. Create a chart comparing the two countries using suchtopics as treatment of women, eating practices, and how strictly a country enforces Islamic law.
Bangladesh is the eighth mostpopulous country in the world.About 130 million people livethere. This population, half that ofthe United States, lives on a landarea smaller than Wisconsin.Almost 40 percent of the peopleare under 15and the populationcontinues to grow.
The population explosion hasbrought many problems, includ-ing malnutrition and disease.Bangladeshs neighborsIndia(one billion people) and Pakistan(about 150 million)also haverapidly expanding populations.
Seeing PatternsWhat roles do
music and danceplay in the lives of the people ofPakistan andBangladesh?
RESEARCH LINKSCLASSZONE .COM
B. Answer Musicand dance areimportant as cul-tural expressions and as ways ofshowing religiousdevotion.
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