I use this classic xkcd image every semester that I teach world regional geography. The explanation of this image is helpful if the students fail to understand the context or the point of this comic strip. The very idea of ‘western’ and ‘eastern’ is very much an idea that comes from ‘the west’ (Greek and Roman civilizations anciently, and a broadly European more recently). The Euro-centric view of the world from a single ‘starting point’ is one reason some geographers don’t like the term ‘Middle East,’ but prefer Southwest Asia and North Africa. The Middle East implies a European starting point as does the Far East.
Tags: regions, perspective.
Leave a Reply