Physical Geography

Physical Geography

Made Simple

2nd Edition - February 8, 1982

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  • Author: Richard H. Bryant
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483278476

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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

  • Preface

    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


Product details

  • No. of pages: 336
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Made Simple 1982
  • Published: February 8, 1982
  • Imprint: Made Simple
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483278476

About the Author

Richard H. Bryant

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