Human geography is one of the two subdivision of the larger academic discipline of geography, the other being physical geography. Human geography studies human interaction with the environment with and across space and time. Human geography seeks an understanding through systematic study of patterns and processes that shape human’s use and alteration of the Earth.
One of the most important areas of study in human geography is that of the political organization of space. This is an entirely man-made concept, with the understanding that political organization on numerous scales (from national to local) reflects particular ideas regarding how the surface of the Earth should be organized. Human geography also studies various cultural phenomena including language, religion, art, and music, all of which serve to explain how and why human beings act in a particular manner in the area in which they live.
Carl Sauer (1889-1975) is largely considered to be the father of human geography, as his landmark article “The Morphology of Landscape”, which sought to connect landscape and culture. Sauer defined a landscape as the defining unit of geography and argued that culture both emerges out of the landscape and then seeks to change the landscape according to its own needs. Human beings live in and transform the environment and have particular perceptions of the surrounding landscape affect their cultural behaviors.