Human Races

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Human Races

Human races

Mankind is classified into races defined solely by physical characteristics. According to geographer Blache, a race is a great division of mankind, the members of which though individually varying are characteristic as a group by certain bodily features, which are transmitted by nature from one generation to another.

The external characteristics are obtained by direct observation. The skin colour, hair colour, eye colour and form shape of nose and jaw are the conspicuous features and these are the oldest method of distinction. On this basis three major division of races namely Caucasoid, Mongoloid and Negroid races.

The Caucasoid stock comprises all European except the Lapps. It accounts for 33% of the world population. The Mongoloid includes all people who inhabit the extensive area lying east of a line drawn from Lappland to Siam. Lapps and the Eskimos are the modified branch of this group. This constitutes 43% of the world population. The Negroid stock consists of the African Negroes, Negrillos, the Indonesians, Oceanic Negritos and Negritans comprising 24% of the world population.

As science and DNA research progress, these divisions can be further refined, or dismissed. I.e. the Polynesian Maori of New Zealand are now proven descendants of an old tribe of Taiwan. At the same time, all evidence points towards one unique origin for all humans, whether genetically or linguistically.

The racial admixture during the past centuries present a clear picture that racial differences are not the important criteria for the cultural and economic development.

The assemblage of ideas, belief institution, skill, tools and artifacts possessed by people at any stage and time constitutes the culture. Culture is usually in a constant state of change. Progress in making tools mark tremendous technical achievements. The development and evolution of culture can be traced from the early societies to the modern era.

Cultural divisions seem hence a more meaningful way of classifying humans for the purpose of human geography.

In order to understand current cultural divisions, let's first have a quick look at the evolution of mankind.

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