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Imagining the Americas in Print

Books, Maps and Encounters in the Atlantic World

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Michiel van Groesen

In Imagining the Americas in Print, Michiel van Groesen reveals the variety of ways in which publishers and printers in early modern Europe gathered information about the Americas, constructed a narrative, and used it to further colonial ambitions in the Atlantic world (1500–1700). The essays examine the creative ways in which knowledge was manufactured in printing workshops. Collectively they bring to life the vivid print culture that determined the relationship between the Old World and the New in the Age of Encounters, and chart the genres that reflected and shaped the European imagination, and helped to legitimate ideologies of colonialism in the next two centuries.

Maps in Newspapers

Approaches of Study and Practices in Portraying War since 19th Century

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André Reyes Novaes

Maps in newspapers generated many discussions among cartographers and geographers working from different approaches and theoretical backgrounds. This work examines these maps from a historiographical as well as a historical perspective. It considers three main questions, namely how maps in the press should be conceptualized, how cartographic images in newspapers have been studied, and how these images changed over time. In order to provide a perspective on the origins, development, and impact of war maps in the press, we will explore maps representing three geopolitical conflicts for Brazilian audiences: The War of the Triple Alliance (1864–1870), the World War II (1939–1945) and the War on Drugs in Rio de Janeiro’s favelas (1994–2010). By exploring maps on these wars, we will identify specific cartographic practices used in this genre as well as the connections that this mode has with other types of map production and consumption.

Networked Nation

Mapping German Cities in Sebastian Münster’s 'Cosmographia'

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Jasper Cornelis van Putten

In Networked Nation: Mapping German Cities in Sebastian Münster’s 'Cosmographia', Jasper van Putten examines the groundbreaking woodcut city views in the German humanist Sebastian Münster’s Cosmographia. This description of the world, published in Basel from 1544 to 1628, glorified the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation and engendered the city book genre. Van Putten argues that Münster’s network of city view makers and contributors—from German princes and artists to Swiss woodcutters, draftsmen, and printers—expressed their local and national cultural identities in the views. The Cosmographia, and the city books it inspired, offer insights into the development of German and Swiss identity from 1550 to Switzerland’s independence from the empire in 1648.

Companions in Geography

East-West Collaboration in the Mapping of Qing China (c. 1685-1735)

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Mario Cams

In Companions in Geography Mario Cams revisits the early 18th century mapping of Qing China, without doubt one of the largest cartographic endeavours of the early modern world. Commonly seen as a Jesuit initiative, the project appears here as the result of a convergence of interests among the French Academy of Sciences, the Jesuit order, and the Kangxi emperor (r. 1661-1722). These connections inspired the gradual integration of European and East Asian scientific practices and led to a period of intense land surveying, executed by large teams of Qing officials and European missionaries. The resulting maps and atlases, all widely circulated across Eurasia, remained the most authoritative cartographic representations of continental East Asia for over a century.

This book is based on Dr. Mario Cams' dissertation, which has been awarded the "2017 DHST Prize for Young Scholars" from the International Union of the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, Division of History of Science and Technology (IUHPST/DHST).

Erudite Eyes

Friendship, Art and Erudition in the Network of Abraham Ortelius (1527-1598)

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Tine Luk Meganck

Erudite Eyes explores the network of the Antwerp cartographer Abraham Ortelius (1527-1598), a veritable trading zone of art and erudition. Populated by such luminaries as Pieter Bruegel, Joris Hoefnagel, Justus Lipsius and Benedictus Arias Montanus, among others, this vibrant antiquarian culture yielded new knowledge about local antiquities and distant civilizations, and offered a framework for articulating art and artistic practice. These fruitful exchanges, undertaken in a spirit of friendship and collaboration, are all the more astonishing when seen against the backdrop of the ongoing wars. Based on a close reading of early modern letters, alba amicorum, printed books, manuscripts and artworks, this book situates Netherlandish art and culture between Bruegel and Rubens in a European perspective.

Apocalyptic Cartography

Thematic Maps and the End of the World in a Fifteenth-Century Manuscript

Chet Van Duzer and Ilya Dines

In Apocalyptic Cartography: Thematic Maps and the End of the World in a Fifteenth-Century Manuscript, Chet Van Duzer and Ilya Dines analyse Huntington Library HM 83, an unstudied manuscript produced in Lübeck, Germany. The manuscript contains a rich collection of world maps produced by an anonymous but strikingly original cartographer. These include one of the earliest programs of thematic maps, and a remarkable series of maps that illustrate the transformations that the world was supposed to undergo during the Apocalypse. The authors supply detailed discussion of the maps and transcriptions and translations of the Latin texts that explain the maps. Copies of the maps in a fifteenth-century manuscript in Wolfenbüttel prove that this unusual work did circulate.

A brief article about this book on the website of National Geographic can be found here.