Is North America And South America One Continent?
A continent is an enormous area of land that hosts various countries within it. There are seven continents in the world including Australia, Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Europe, North America and South America. Water bodies separate these continents. Of all the seven continents, it's only Antarctica and Australia that are entirely separated from the rest of the continents by the world ocean. The United States viewed the two continents (North America and South America) as a single continent and referred to it as the Americas. However, this point lasted only until the Second World War. Geographers regard North America and South America as two continents.
North America is ranked as the third largest continent. It is located to the north of the planet earth as its name suggests and it is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Arctic Ocean to the west, east and to the north respectively. It is made up of twenty-four countries with a total population of 579, 024,000 people, the United States is the most populated nation with a population of 321.2 million people. The indigenous North Americans are believed to be Asians who arrived in North America by crossing from North East Asia. Since then the population has grown dramatically making North America be the fourth most populated continent after Asia, Africa, and Europe.
The most significant part of this continent lies in the Southern Hemisphere. Some geographers argue that South America is a subcontinent of the Americas, but this is disputed as South America is a planet of its own. It is bordered by the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean to the south and west respectively. It is ranked as the fourth largest continent covering an approximate area of 15.53 million square kilometers, just a little bit smaller than North America. South America has a total population of 422, 500, 000 people, Brazil being the most populated country with an estimated population of 207.7 million people.
Why North And South America Form Two Continents?
Although the two continents are all located in the western hemisphere, they cannot be described as being one continent due to various reasons. Despite the fact that they are both positioned in the western hemisphere, North America is situated to the Arctic (Northern) Hemisphere while South America is placed below the equator, i.e., to the Southern Hemisphere. The two continents are commonly referred to as the Americas and are separated by ocean waters, and North America is larger than South America.
The comparison is even expressed in the two continent's population; North America is the fourth most populated continent while South America is the fifth with a population of around 371 million people. The Paleo-Indians initially inhabited the two continents in the 18,000 BC. Although the same people previously occupied the two continents, they differ in the predominant languages spoken today. The languages that are common in North America include English, Spanish, and French while South Americans commonly speak Portuguese and Spanish.