Realism and its Application in Practical Geographic Studies and Practice


Realism is a philosophical and artistic movement that originated in the 19th century, focusing on the depiction of everyday life and objects in a true and objective manner. It emphasizes the importance of reality and the accurate representation of it. It has had a profound impact on various disciplines, including geography. The application of realism in practical geographic studies and practice has brought about significant advancements and improvements in the understanding and analysis of the world around us.

One of the main principles of realism is the idea that reality exists independently of human perception or interpretation. This concept is especially relevant in the field of geography, where understanding the physical and human characteristics of the Earth is of utmost importance. By adopting a realist approach, geographers are able to study and depict the world with a more objective and unbiased perspective.

Realism has also influenced the development of geographic methodologies and techniques. For instance, the use of maps and other geographic representations has become more accurate and realistic thanks to the principles of realism. These tools are essential in practical geography studies and are used extensively in various fields such as urban planning, environmental management, and disaster risk reduction.

In terms of practical applications, realism has greatly enhanced the analysis of geographic data. With the advancement of technology, geographers are now able to collect vast amounts of data and analyze it using various techniques. Realism allows geographers to interpret this data in a way that accurately reflects the real world, thereby providing valuable insights and solutions to real-world problems.

Realism also plays a crucial role in understanding the complex relationship between humans and their environment. By focusing on the objective realities of human societies and the physical environment, geographers are able to identify and address issues such as natural resource depletion, climate change, and urbanization. This approach has led to the development of sustainable solutions and policies that take into account the real needs and challenges faced by communities.

One of the most important aspects of realism in practical geography studies is its emphasis on the interconnectedness of various phenomena. In other words, geographers do not view the physical and human aspects of the Earth in isolation but rather as interdependent systems. This allows for a more comprehensive understanding of processes such as land use change, migration patterns, and economic development, ultimately leading to more effective problem-solving and decision-making.

Realism also encourages geographers to utilize a multi-disciplinary approach in their studies and research. By integrating various perspectives and methodologies, geographers are able to gain a deeper understanding of geographical phenomena and their implications. For example, a realist perspective in climate change research would consider the physical factors such as temperature and precipitation, as well as the human factors such as land use and emission patterns.

In conclusion, realism has greatly influenced the field of geography, both in theory and practice. Its emphasis on objective reality, interconnectedness, and multi-disciplinary approaches has led to significant advancements in practical geographic studies and applications. By adopting a realist perspective, geographers are able to provide more accurate and valuable insights into the complex world we live in, and contribute towards the development of sustainable solutions to real-world problems. As such, the application of realism in geography continues to be of utmost importance in the pursuit of understanding and making sense of our ever-changing world.