Physical Geography - 2nd Edition - ISBN: 9780434985203, 9781483278476

Physical Geography

2nd Edition

Made Simple

Authors: Richard H. Bryant
eBook ISBN: 9781483278476
Imprint: Made Simple
Published Date: 8th February 1982
Page Count: 336
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Physical Geography Made Simple focuses on developments in physical geography, including advancements in the study of landforms, weather, climate, water, soils, plants, and animals.
The book first offers information on rocks and relief, weathering, slopes, and rivers and drainage basins. Topics include rock structures and landforms, crustal structure and movement, physical and chemical weathering, measurement and description of slopes, and transport, erosion, and deposition. The manuscript then ponders on glacial and periglacial landforms and desert and uropical landforms.
The publication takes a look at coastal features, landscape development, and the atmosphere and its energy. The manuscript also elaborates on moisture in the atmosphere, air motion, general circulation, and weather. Discussions focus on fronts, weather prediction, planetary wind belts, pressure variations, upper air motion, adiabatic processes, and evaporation and condensation.
The text is a valuable reference for geographers and readers interested in physical geography.

Table of Contents


1 Introduction to Physical Geography

Recent Trends in Physical Geography

Models and Systems

Suggested Further Reading

Part One: Landforms

2 Rocks and Relief

Crustal Structure and Movement

Major Tectonic Landforms

Rock Structures and Landforms

Rock Type and Landforms

Suggested Further Reading

3 Weathering

Physical Weathering

Chemical Weathering

Factors Affecting Weathering


Suggested Further Reading

4 Slopes

The Measurement and Description of Slopes

Approaches to Slope Studies

Slopes as Open Systems

Mass Movements

Run-Off on Slopes

Controls on Slope Processes

Slope Evolution

Suggested Further Reading

5 Rivers and Drainage Basins


Water Flow in Rivers

Transport, Erosion and Deposition

The Long Profile

Channel Patterns

The River Basin

Suggested Further Reading

6 Glacial and Periglacial Landforms

Ice and Glaciers

Glacial Erosion

Glacial Deposition

Other Effects of Glaciation

Periglacial Phenomena

Suggested Further Reading

7 Desert and Tropical Landforms Deserts

The Humid Tropics

Suggested Further Reading

8 Coastal Features

Factors Affecting Coasts

Shoreline Processes

Cliffs and Platforms


Low-Energy Coasts

Coral Coasts

Coastal Classification

Suggested Further Reading

9 Landscape Development

Reconstructing Landscape Development

Cyclic and Non-Cyclic Development

Pianation Surfaces as Indicators of Landscape Development

Landscape Development in the Pleistocene

Suggested Further Reading

Part Two: Weather and Climate

10 The Atmosphere and Its Energy

The Nature of the Atmosphere

Atmospheric Energy

Air Temperatures

Suggested Further Reading

11 Moisture in the Atmosphere

Humidity and Its Expression

Evaporation and Condensation

Adiabatic Processes

Stability and Instability

Clouds and Fog



World Precipitation

Suggested Further Reading

12 Air Motion

Pressure Variations

Forces Governing Air Movement

Upper Air Motion

Suggested Further Reading

13 The General Circulation

The Planetary Wind Belts

The Mechanics of the Circulation

Surface Features and the Circulation

The Role of the Monsoon

Suggested Further Reading

14 Weather

Air Mass Weather


Frontal Depressions

Non-Frontal Depressions


Weather Prediction

Suggested Further Reading

15 Climatic Types

Climatic Classification

Equatorial Zone

Tropical Summer Rain Zone

Subtropical Dry Zone

Subtropical Winter Rain Zone

Temperate Zone

Subpolar Zone

High Polar Zone

Suggested Further Reading

16 Local Climate

The Climatic Effects of Relief

The Climatic Effects of Water Bodies

The Climatic Effects of Vegetation

Urban Climates

The Climate Nearest The Ground

Suggested Further Reading

17 Climatic Change

The Climatic Record

Causes of Climatic Change


Suggested Further Reading

Part Three: Soils, Plants and Animals

18 Soils

Physical and Chemical Characteristics of Soils

Soil-Forming Processes

Factors Controlling Soil Formation

The Classification of Soils

World Pattern of Soils

Suggested Further Reading

19 The Working of Ecosystems

The Structure of Ecosystems

The Trophic Structure of Ecosystems

Energy Flow and the Standing Crop


Ecological Niche and Species Structure

Nutrient Cycles

Succession and Climax

Suggested Further Reading

20 Environmental Controls

The Concept of Tolerance






Edaphic Factors

Biotic Factors

Suggested Further Reading

21 Dispersal and Adaptation

Sources of Variation

Natural Selection

Adaptive Radiation

The Formation of New Species

Migration and Dispersal

The Pattern of Evolution

Suggested Further Reading

22 The Historical Factor in the Distribution of Species

The Distant Past

Pleistocene Changes

Post-Glacial Vegetation Change in Britain

Suggested Further Reading

23 Major Natural Ecosystems

Forest Ecosystems

Grassland Ecosystems

Biological Deserts

The Marine Ecosystem

Suggested Further Reading

Part Four: Physical Geography and Man

24 Human Impact on the Natural Environment

Modification of Landforms

Modification of the Atmosphere

Modification of Ecosystems

Suggested Further Reading

25 Applied Physical Geography

Environmental Hazards

Environmental Management

Economic Value

Resource Evaluation

Suggested Further Reading

Appendix: The Geological Time-Scale



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About the Author

Richard H. Bryant

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