Deposit Velocity and Its Significance

Deposit Velocity and Its Significance

Deposit Velocity and Its Significance

Deposit Velocity and Its Significance

Excerpt

In this monograph I attempt to explain some features of the cultural geography of the northern (formerly Spanish) zone of Morocco. The work has two related themes. I have sought, in the first place, to interpret the distribution of a selected number of culture traits. My second main effort has been to determine the effects of man's activities on the land. The cultural and physical geography of the area is introduced in chapters I and ii. It seemed desirable to reverse the usual order of geographic presentation and begin with culture rather than nature, for most of the processes described in this work have been initiated by man. The discussion of culture history in the next two chapters covers two millennia. It is my conviction that cultural geography is best studied in the light of origins and dispersals, which implies an unrestricted view of the past. The historical résumé in chapters iii and iv constitutes the foundation for interpretations of modern settlement and livelihood in chapters v-vii. The sum of these studies -- cultural and natural, historical and modern -- provides the background for an assessment of man's effect on vegetation and soil. In chapter viii the main findings of the entire work are summarized.

In a volume of modest size it is manifestly impossible to consider all elements of the landscape. By choice I have not stressed the areas of European influence and urbanization. The focus of my interest has been in rural areas where the most important goals of life are independence and self-sufficiency. The mountainous area of northern Morocco, like the High, Middle, and Anti Atlas, has suffered little from the obscuring effects of foreign influence. The Arabs, who first entered Morocco in the seventh century, had little interest in the highlands. European colonists, concerned primarily with mechanized agriculture, also preferred lands of gentle relief. All the mountain tribes have embraced Islam, some have learned to speak Arabic, and a few have adopted the Singer sewing machine. But subsistence farming and barter still govern tribal economy, and tradition arbitrates disputes.

When a Moroccan is close to home he identifies himself as an inhabitant of a certain village or hamlet. If further clarification is necessary, he may add that he is a member of a community or canton (farqa). He will announce his tribal affiliation (qabila) only when he is away from home. For example, in Alhucemas one meets members of the tribes of Ibuqquyen, Aith Wariyaghar, and Thimsaman. It is only in Tetuán or some equally remote place that the same people identify themselves as Rifians. They are keenly aware of being Moroccans or North Africans only when they are abroad.

It follows that this study should begin with hamlets or cantons, and only later consider differences among tribes or confederations of tribes. Unfortunately, this procedure would be impractical. I have been compelled to limit my analysis to differences of large scale. Moreover, I have been obliged to focus my attention on variations in material culture. When a Moroccan is questioned about his neighbors, he seldom comments on the nature of their houses, clothing, or crops. His first thoughts are of personality traits, especially those he regards as objectionable. Here again, I have had to adopt a limited and somewhat distorted . . .

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