South America, earlier known simply as America (1507–1538), is a continent located in the Western Hemisphere, mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, with a relatively small portion in the Northern Hemisphere. It is also considered a subcontinent of the Americas.
It is bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean and on the north and east by the Atlantic Ocean; North America and the Caribbean Sea lie to the northwest. It includes twelve sovereign states – Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, and Venezuela – and two non-sovereign areas – French Guiana, an overseas region of France, and the Falkland Islands, a British Overseas Territory. In addition to this, Trinidad and Tobago and the ABC islands of the Netherlands may also be considered part of South America.
South America has an area of 17,840,000 square kilometers (6,890,000 sq mi). Its population as of 2005 has been estimated at more than 371,090,000. South America ranks fourth in area (after Asia, Africa, and North America) and fifth in population (after Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America).
Most of the population lives near the western or eastern coasts of the continent while the interior and the far south are sparsely populated. The geography of western South America is dominated by the Andes mountains, in contrast to the eastern large river basins in the Amazon, Paraná and Orinoco. Most of the continent lies in the tropics.
The continent is culturally, ethnically and racially diverse; hosting cultures and peoples originating in South America as well as Europe, Africa and Asia. Given a history of colonialism most South Americans speak Spanish or Portuguese and societies and states are commonly modeled after Western traditions.
Other articles related to "south americas, south america, america":
... Continent Model In some parts of the world South America is viewed as a subcontinent of America (a single continent in these areas), for example Latin America, Latin Europe, and ...
Famous quotes containing the words americas and/or south:
“The only history is a mere question of ones struggle inside oneself. But that is the joy of it. One need neither discover Americas nor conquer nations, and yet one has as great a work as Columbus or Alexander, to do.”
—D.H. (David Herbert)
“There were metal detectors on the staff-room doors and Hernandez usually had a drawer full of push-daggers, nunchuks, stun-guns, knucks, boot-knives, and whatever else the detectors had picked up. Like Friday morning at a South Miami high school.”
—William Gibson (b. 1948)