What is a SGA
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Oracle SGA is a memory area occupied by oracle and where oracle performs all its activities most
of the time.

ofcourse oracle also reads and writes directly to disk without using the SGA under certain
circumstances(parallel operations , sql loader and other direct path loading operations) but to read
and write everytime to disk is very time consuming as compared to reading and writing to memory.

you can read more about the sga here  
sga

you can find detailed information about sga here sga detailed

10g release 2 documentation  jjj  To go back to the 50 dba terms for the new dba please clink the
link.