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Kallie Szczepanski

Where Is the Line Between Asia and Europe?

By August 16, 2008

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Recently I've been pondering the definition of an "Asian country."

It seems that every expert has a slightly different take on which countries belong in Asia, and which are European.

For example, Russia. The majority of Russia's area is within Asia, yet most of the population lives west of the Urals - that is to say, in Europe, by the traditional demarcation.

What about Georgia? From an historical point of view, I consider it a European nation, since it is ethnically, culturally and linguistically Slavic. However, our About.com Geography Guide, Matt Rosenberg, lists it as an Asian country. Which is it?

Of course, there is a simple answer to this dilemma. In fact, Eurasia is one continent. There is no line between the two; the peoples, cultures and languages of Eurasia shade into one another imperceptibly.

Our arbitrary division of Europe and Asia is just an artifact of Eurocentrism, in my opinion. However, it's so deeply engrained in the thinking of people on every continent that it's unlikely to vanish anytime soon.

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