Social Studies - 2019-20

WG.10 d - Cultural Influences and Landscapes of North Africa and Southwest Asia

The student will analyze the characteristics of the North African and Southwest Asian regions by 

d) recognizing cultural influences and landscapes.

Adopted: 2015



The cultural landscapes of the North African and Southwest Asian regions are influenced by religious traditions and ongoing modern conflicts.


Cultural influences 

  • Rapid urbanization 
  • Modernization centered in urban areas while traditional life continues in rural areas 
  • Large percentage of population under age 15
  • Population unevenly distributed 
  • Arab countries and Arabic language 
  • Non-Arab countries: Turkey, Iran, and Israel 
  • Birthplace of three major monotheistic religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam 
  • Conflict over Israel/Palestine 
  • Nomadic lifestyles 
  • Art that reflects the diversity of religions (e.g., stained glass, geometric tiles, calligraphy, mosaics, prayer rugs) 

Cultural landscape 

  • Mosques, minarets 
  • Church of the Holy Sepulcher 
  • Hagia Sophia 
  • Bazaars, suqs (souks) 
  • Western Wall 
  • Dome of the Rock 
  • Kaaba 
  • Pyramids 
  • Walled cities


Updated: Jun 13, 2018