Explain the concept of Possibilism thought in human geography


Explain the concept of Possibilism thought in human geography.

(Class 12 geography, Fundamentals of Human GeographyChapter -1. Human Geography -Nature and Scope )


As we know, human geography is the study of the relationship between the physical environment and humans.
Previously, when human society was primitive, human actions and human behavior were subject to powerful physical environmental forces. This type of interaction is what we call environmental determinism in human geography.

With the advancement of technology and socio-economic development, primitive society turned into an advanced society, consequently, our relationship with the physical environment also changed.
With the passage of time, humans began to understand their physical environment. For better socio-economic development and to exploit the physical environment, humans kept on developing more and better technology. Over time, humans have overcome the constraints of the physical environment that primitive societies could not. Today human beings have created a cultural landscape everywhere, such as hotels and restaurants on the highlands, vast urban sprawl, fields, orchards, and pastures in the plains and rolling hills, ports on the coast, sea routes on the sea surface, and satellites in space.

This type of relationship and interaction by humans with the physical environment is called possibilism.

Possibilism is one of the approaches to human geography that believe that nature provides opportunities and possibilities everywhere. It is up to humans to exploit the possibilities.

What used to be naturalized human, now nature has become humanized. Now, despite living in desert areas, people are able to eat oranges and apples which are not found in the desert environment.
Due to advancements in technology, people are able to grow vegetables without using soil; We are growing paddy crops through irrigation in dry areas.

Possibilism believes that human beings are not subordinate to nature (which was believed by environmental determinism). Nature does not dictate but gives opportunities and possibilities everywhere. Man can change nature according to his convenience.

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