What's on my mind.

18 December 2008


Let's put some numbers to this America-centric charge of the 100 things list in my last post.

First List:Items 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, and 17 give examples of geological feature (10/10) in the NA which can, most likely, also be found elsewhere in the world. Twenty-seven of the items on the first list are North America specific locations (total of 34 specific places); 14 of them are for geological features that may be seen on another continent (IDK if they are); for an additional 8 I'm not sure why we are 'suppose' to visit the locations so I don't know if they are truly unique geologically or just happen to be good examples of something that could be found somewhere else.

Bently List: Of the 45 specific places listed, 13 are in North America (3 in Alaska alone!). Off the top of my head that seems like a reasonable share considering the amount of land we're covering. For the geological features and activities he list examples in North America for ten of them (55 total, 11 with example locations) and most have non-American examples as well.

So both lists offer examples of geologic features in North America with or without non-NA examples. Bently clearly lists many more non-US places a geologist should visit. I think the America-centrism critic of the original meme may stem from many of the specific locations are in the US even though the geologic feature may be found elsewhere. I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt, so I'm willing to believe the original author simply gave examples he was most familiar with.

That said I think I like the Bently list better. It lists specific places of geological importance and then geological features. By separating them he avoids the danger of an over abundance of American locations making the list and stress that while a geological feature may be well repreesented in a given place it almost certainly exists in locations around the world. It also means that those of us who haven't traveled much (at least not yet) don't feel completely left out.

In the end, it's just a way to fill a post. (I've managed to make two posts out of it. :P) To find a true geologist life time 100 list we'd have to get geologists all over the world to submit suggestions of both locations and features and then figure out which were the most common and even then there would be arguements. Because everyone will have a different opinion of what one MUST do/see.

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