Carl O. Sauer
Carl Ortwin Sauer (December 24, 1889 – July 18, 1975) was an American geographer. Sauer was a professor of geography at the University of California, Berkeley from 1923 until becoming professor emeritus in 1957 and was instrumental in the early development of the geography graduate school at Berkeley. One of his most well known works was Agricultural Origins and Dispersals (1952). In 1927, Carl Sauer wrote the article "Recent Developments in Cultural Geography," which considered how cultural landscapes are made up of "the forms superimposed on the physical landscape."
He was born in Warrenton, Missouri and graduated from the University of Chicago with a Ph.D. in 1915.
Carl Sauer's paper "The Morphology of Landscape" is probably the most influential in developing ideas on Cultural landscapes and it is still cited today. Ironically however, Sauer's paper was really concerned about his own vision for the discipline of geography, which was to establish the discipline on a phenonomological basis rather than it being specifically concerned with cultural landscapes. "Every field of knowledge is characterised by its declared preoccupation with a certain group of phenomena”. Geography was assigned the study of areal knowledge or landscapes or chorology. “Within each landscape there are phenomena that are not simply there but are either associated or independent of each other”. Sauer saw that the geographer’s task was to discover the areal connection between phenomena. Thus "the task of geography is conceived as the establishment of a critical system which embraces the phenomenology of landscape, in order to grasp in all of its meaning and colour the varied terrestrial scene" 
Sauer was a fierce critic of environmental determinism, which was the prevailing theory in geography when he began his career. He proposed instead an approach variously called "landscape morphology" or "cultural history." This approach involved the inductive gathering of facts about the human impact on the landscape over time. Sauer rejected positivism, preferring particularist and historicist understandings of the world. He drew on the work of anthropologist Alfred Kroeber, and was accused of introducing a "superorganic" concept of culture into geography. Politically Sauer was a conservative, but expressed concern about the way that modern capitalism and centralized government were destroying the cultural diversity and environmental health of the world.
After his retirement, Sauer's school of human-environment geography developed into cultural ecology. Cultural ecology retained Sauer's interest in human modification of the landscape and pre-modern cultures.
He was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the American Geographical Society in 1935, and its Daly Medal in 1940.
- ↑ Sauer, C. O. 1925. "The Morphology of Landscape". University of California Publications in Geography 2 (2):19-53.
- ↑ James, P. E. and Martin, G. 1981, All Possible Worlds: A history of geographical ideas, John Wiley & Sons, New York, 1981: 321-324
- ↑ Leighly, J. 1963. Land and Life: A selection from the writings of Carl Ortwin Sauer. Berkeley: University of California Press, p. 6
- ↑ Price, M., and M. Lewis. 1993. "The Reinvention of Cultural Geography". Annals of the Association of American Geographers 83 (1):1-17.
- ↑ Williams, M. 1983. "The apple of my eye: Carl Sauer and historical geography". Journal of Historical Geography 9 (1):1-28.
- ↑ Sauer, C. O. 1925. "The Morphology of Landscape". University of California Publications in Geography 2, p. 20
- ↑ Sauer, C. O. 1925. "The Morphology of Landscape". University of California Publications in Geography 2, p. 21
- ↑ Sauer, C. O. 1925. "The Morphology of Landscape". University of California Publications in Geography 2, p. 22
- ↑ Sauer, C. O. 1925. "The Morphology of Landscape". University of California Publications in Geography 2, p. 25
- ↑ Duncan, J. 1980. "The superorganic in American cultural geography". Annals of the Association of American Geographers 70:181-198. But see also Solot, M. 1986. "Carl Sauer and cultural evolution". Annals of the Association of American Geographers 76(4):508-520.
- ↑ "American Geographical Society Honorary Fellowships". amergeog.org. http://www.amergeog.org/honorslist.pdf. Retrieved 2009-03-02.
- Carl Sauer on Culture and Landscape:Readings and Commentaries edited by William M. Denevan and Kent Mathewson. Baton Rouge LA.:Louisiana State University Press, 2009 ISBN 978-0-8071-3394-1