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Migration is defined broadly as a permanent or semi permanent change of residence. There is no limit put for the extent for the place.
Migratory movements are therefore a product of the social, cultural, economic, political and physical circumstances. This variation and their choice of the place and time for migration are due to the interaction of one or more factors. These factors include those which are (1) associated with the area of origin (2) associated with area of destination (3) with area of barriers and (4) person themselves.
The role of the first two factors depends on the migrating people's knowledge and understanding. The earlier migration or pre historical migrations were the result of the adverse physical environment, reduction in food supply and the hope of achieving better life. The ignorance of the new attraction, even though it presented a their way.
Migration of the historical time were both voluntary and forced. The pushing factors were political, military and economic invasions, wars, Migration due to famine and in search of new opportunities often resulted in unplanned group migration. Some of them were successful and some were harmful perishing a few tribes wiping away from the earth's landscape.
The migration uncontrolled gained momentum on account of thirst locating new habitat. In such cases the differences between two factors were conspicuous. The factors associated with the destination in terms of unknown areas had posed numerous obstacles. These obstacles further triggered continuous migration. The colonization of America is of this type. Similar conditions existed in Australia but to this country it was a forced grouped migrations.
The personal factors gain importance in later years. Personal sensitivities, intelligence and awareness of conditions elsewhere decide the willingness or resistance for migration. The migration resulted from this is that of either individual or individual family. Recent years have shown that the group migration has almost disappeared with occasional exceptions and individual migration is grown tremendously. At this stage the obstacles raised are the restrictions imposed by the countries for selective migration.
Volume of migration varies greatly. It is due to the diversity of the area or territory, diversity of people and culture, diversity of the obstacles imposed and finally the variation is due to economic fluctuation.
The characteristics of the migrants show the interaction of the determining factors. Migrant is selective depending on his response perception of opportunities or of obstacles and also on the check imposed on immigrants by the country. Trained persons, skilled or knowledgeable in specialized fields have wide choice therefore they are selective. Migrants on free will do so because of better facilities available. If the migration is controlled it is based on exchange between the countries concerned. This type has political and administrative support. Migrants moving due to negative factors are by (1) expulsion or forced out of country adverse climatic conditions (famine, drought and floods) diseases or as the refugees for rehabilitation. Total migrants selective both on positive and negative factors represent bimodal trend.
Better chance of life and in search of occupation is primary criteria at all levels. Transhumance prevailing in European valleys is the good example at low cultural level. Forced migration of Negroes marked an era of group migration for jobs and invention of labour. Besides rural-urban migration of semi-permanent nature is purely on economic opportunities. Similarly daily migration is a regular phenomenon in present day cultural world. Semi-Permanent and voluntary migration during the past few decades are based on leisure and tour.
All nations irrespective of their variation in culture and economy promote voluntary migration on the basis of tourism and exchange of cultural groups.
Early migrations resulted in tampering of the human habitat. Hence large-scale modifications took place. Depending on the opportunities realized by the immigrants the cultural diffusion was either passive or aggressive. Passive mixture led to the diffusion and a new admixture of culture emerged. When the diffusion was aggressive isolated folk or tribal culture disappeared if it was weak to withstand the force. Such results existed because of colonization. Present day migration takes place where economic disparity is dominant over cultural heterogeneity. As a result wide diffusion takes placed which is voluntary, spread of world religion was both voluntary, and forced. The migrants act as the carrier of ideas, innovation and technical skill. Thus migration helps in expansion diffusion and relocation diffusion. Regional awareness of the problems is widened because of modem telecommunication network.
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