Contributions to the history of geomorphology and Quaternary geology: An introduction
David R. Oldroyd, Rodney H. Grapes, 2008. "Contributions to the history of geomorphology and Quaternary geology: An introduction", History of Geomorphology and Quaternary Geology, R. H. Grapes, D. Oldroyd, A. Grigelis
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This Special Publication deals with various aspects of the histories of geomorphology and Quaternary geology in different parts of the world. Geomorphology is the study of landforms and the processes that shape them, past and present. Quaternary geology studies the sediments and associated materials that have come to mantle much of Earth's surface during the relatively recent Pleistocene and Holocene epochs. Geomorphology, with its concern for Earth's surface features and processes, deals with information that is much more amenable to observation and measurement than is the case for most geological work. Quaternary geology focuses mostly, but not exclusively, on the Earth's surficial sedimentary cover, which is usually more accessible than the harder rocks of the deeper past.
Institutionally, geomorphology is usually situated alongside, or within, academic departments of geology or geography. In most English-speaking countries, its links are more likely to be with geography; but in the United States these connections are usually shared between geography and geology, although rarely in the same institution. In leading institutions everywhere, strong links exist between geomorphology and such cognate disciplines as soil science, hydrology, oceanography and civil engineering. Although nominally part of geology, Quaternary geology also has strong links with geography and with those disciplines, such as climatology, botany, zoology and archaeology, concerned with environmental change through the relatively recent past.
Given that geomorphology concerns the study of the Earth's surface (i.e. landforms, and their origin, evolution and the processes that shape them) and that the uppermost strata are in many cases of Pleistocene