Whatever Happened to Geographic Literacy?


H.J. de Blij


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International competitions, tests and polls prove that Americans are among the most geographically illiterate citizens in the world. Indeed, the U.S.A. is the only country o f consequence in which it is possible to go from kindergarten through graduate school without ever having taking a course in geography. As a result, political leaders have embarrassed themselves and their country in foreign settings; members of the govern ment have misled the country in disastrous foreign-policy campaigns. Additionally, an inadequately educated public is in no position to make its views count. H.J. deBlij, a world-renown geography scholar and former geography editor for Good Morning Americ a, will address why geographic illiteracy can have catastrophic consequences and what could and should be done about it.

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