Subsidence

The settling of land by the compression of lower layers of rock and soil, usually accelerated by the removal of water from below the surface. Of particular importance in urban centers, with Mexico City having one of the most persistent problems.

Subsistence activity

An activity in which a family produces only the food, clothing, and shelter they themselves need.

Subsistence farming

Subsistence farming: raising just enough crops or animals to feed the farmer’s family.

Suburb

A political unit or community touching the central city’s borders or touching other suburbs that touch the city.

Sudan

Location: East Africa Official name: Republic of Sudan Formation (date of independence / date current borders were established): 1956 / 2011 Capital city: Khartoum Population: 34 million / 47 people per sq mile (18 people per sq km) Total land area: 718,722 square miles (1,861,481 square km) Language(s) spoken: Arabic, Nubian, Beja, Fur Main religions: … Read more

Sultan

A ruler of a Muslim country.

Summer monsoon

The season when winds blow from the southwest across the Indian ocean toward south Asia, from June through September, with winds stirring up powerful storms and causing severe flooding.

Summer solstice

On or about June 22, the first day of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, the northern tip of Earth’s axis is inclined toward the sun at an angle of 23.5 degrees from a line perpendicular to the plane of the ecliptic. This is the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. On or about December 22, the first day of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, the southern tip of Earth’s axis is inclined toward the sun at an angle of 23.5 degrees from a line perpendicular to the plane of the ecliptic. This is the summer solstice in the Southern Hemisphere.

Sun Belt

A U.S. area of indefinite extent, encompassing most of the South, plus the West at least as far north as Denver, Salt Lake City, and San Francisco. This region has shown faster growth in population and jobs than the nation as a whole during the past several decades.

Sunni

The branch of Islam regarding successorship to the Prophet Muhammad is a matter of consensus among religious elders.

Supra

Georgian (Russian) term for a dinner party, with many dishes and courses, toasts, and short speeches.

Suriname

Location: South America Official name: Republic of Suriname Formation (date of independence / date current borders were established): 1975 / 1975 Capital city: Paramaribo Population: 500,000 / 8 people per sq mile (3 people per sq km) Total land area: 63,039 square miles (163,270 square km) Language(s) spoken: Sranan (creole), Dutch (official language), Javanese, Sarnami … Read more