Latin America Vocabulary

Geography
land bridge
narrow strip of land that joins two larger land masses
peninsula

piece of land with water on three sides

latitude
location north or south of the Equator
hurricane
strong tropical storm with high winds and heavy rains
subsistence farm
small farm where a farmer grows only enough food to feed his family
plantation
large farm that raises a single crop for sale
industrialize
when a country changes its economy to be based more on manufacturing an less on farming
service industry
businesses that provide services to people rather than produce goods
jade
a shiny stone that comes in many shades of green
obsidian
a hard black glass created by volcanoes
maize
corn
hieroglyphics
form of writing that uses signs and symbols
mural
wall painting
hacienda
large ranch
plaza
public square
adobe
sun-dried clay bricks
federal republic
type of government in which power is divided between national and state governments, and a strong president leads the national government
migrant worker
worker who travels from place to place to plant or harvest crops when needed
national debt
money owed by the government
smog
haze of fog and chemicals in the air
isthmus
narrow piece of land that links two larger areas of land
canopy
top layer of the rain forest that shades the forest floor
ecotourist
person who travels to other countries to enjoy natural wonders
literacy rate
percentage of people who can read and write
republic
country with an elected president as head of the government
parliamentary democracy
form of government in which an elected legislature chooses a prime minister to head the government
archipelago
group of islands
bauxite
a mineral used to make aluminum
communist state
government in which the leaders have strong control of the economy and society
cooperative
farm owned and operated by the government
embargo
ban on trade
free trade zone
where people can buy goods from other countries without paying taxes
commonwealth
partly self-governing territory
basin
low area surrounded by higher land
selva
Brazilian name for rainforest
escarpment
steep cliff between higher and lower land
favela
slum area
deforestation
the cutting down or destroying of large areas of forest
pampas
vast treeless plains
estancia
huge ranches on the pampas
gaucho
cowhand
hydroelectric power
energy generated by flowing water
llanos
grassy plains
cordillera
group of mountain ranges that run side by side
cash crop
a farm product sold to other countries
mestizo
person of mixed European and Native American background
campesino
farmer
caudillo
military ruler
navigable
body of water wide and deep enough for ships to travel in it
foothills
low hills at the base of mountains

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *