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Teaching Geography in Southfields

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The BBC is currently producing a series of documentaries about politicians doing public service jobs. This includes Clare Short teaching Geography in Southfields Community College in London. The Guardian newspaper asked the teacher she replaced, Celina Viner, to keep a diary of what went on during this week in the classroom. In this article she describes a week of poor punctuality, untidy work and bad temper. The programme, My Week in the Real World, will be shown on BBC2 on Wednesday, 25th February.


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  • 8 months later...


As you know, my approaches to History includes strategic, cultural and climatic geography...

In this I follow the annales school of Marc Bloch and Fernand Braudel.

Textual and critical post-modern approaches have discouraged the study

of history's structural and strategic underpinnings,

but the new digital capacities and continuing interest in cartography and geographic factors can make a difference in history.

When I address the OAH or the state historical conferences,

My historical map lectures are very well received and my

strategic geographic reasons for cultural and political events always stimulates debate.

Finally I notice a number of USA universities want to teach

DIgital GEographic Systems, but need to bring in British Geographers because

of shortfalls in staffing pool of american geography Ph.D.'s

Did You Know That/ many British geographers are finding work in the growing geography departments in the states. The technology is driving the field as it diversifies from its strategic/mineral roots and climatology/weather training roots.

For example at Georgia State the Geography Department is the Anthropology/geography department

....state schools do better than the private universities

....some private universities have no geography department....shocking.

Shanet Clark, Woodruff fellow

Edited by Shanet Clark
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