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Maps and Civilization: Cartography in Culture and Society, Third Edition

Maps and Civilization: Cartography in Culture and Society, Third Edition

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Maps and Civilization: Cartography in Culture and Society, Third Edition

peringkat:
4/5 (15 peringkat)
Panjangnya:
349 pages
Dirilis:
Nov 15, 2008
ISBN:
9780226799759
Format:
Buku

Deskripsi

In this concise introduction to the history of cartography, Norman J. W. Thrower charts the intimate links between maps and history from antiquity to the present day. A wealth of illustrations, including the oldest known map and contemporary examples made using Geographical Information Systems (GIS), illuminate the many ways in which various human cultures have interpreted spatial relationships.
The third edition of Maps and Civilization incorporates numerous revisions, features new material throughout the book, and includes a new alphabetized bibliography.
 
Praise for previous editions of Maps and Civilization:
“A marvelous compendium of map lore. Anyone truly interested in the development of cartography will want to have his or her own copy to annotate, underline, and index for handy referencing.”—L. M. Sebert, Geomatica
Dirilis:
Nov 15, 2008
ISBN:
9780226799759
Format:
Buku

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Maps and Civilization - Norman J. W. Thrower

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  • (5/5)
    In Maps & Civilization: Cartography in Culture and Society, Norman J.W. Thrower argues, “Viewed in its development through time, the map details the changing thought of the human race, and few works seem to be such an excellent indicator of culture and civilization. In the modern world the map performs a number of significant functions: as a necessary tool in the comprehension of spatial phenomena; a most efficient device for the storage of information, including three-dimensional data; and a fundamental research aid permitting an understanding of distributions and relationships not otherwise known or imperfectly understood” (pg. 1). He continues, “Though technological in nature, cartography, like architecture, has attributes of both a scientific and an artistic pursuit, a dichotomy not satisfactorily reconciled in all presentations” (pg. 1). He traces the process of mapmaking from pre-literate peoples up through modern satellite-based imagery, arguing that new technology does not equate better maps as each culture privileges the information it deems most useful.Thrower identifies Gerardus Mercator and printing technology as crucial to Renaissance mapmaking. He writes, “All of the previous accomplishments of Mercator, who was by this time established in Duisburg in the Rhineland, were eclipsed by the publication in 1569 of a great world map on the projection that bears his name” (pg. 77). The map simplified information for navigators and represented the relationships between territories for politicians. He concludes, “The printed world map on a systematic projection was perhaps the most distinctive contribution to cartography in Europe during the Renaissance” (pg. 90). Johann G. Lehmann used hachures to suggest more than two-dimensions during the Enlightenment. Thrower writes, “At best the technique is expressive, but at worst the hachures degenerate into ‘hairy caterpillars’” (pg. 113). Thrower concludes, “Delineation of the continuous three-dimensional form of the land has always been one of the most challenging problems in cartography” (pg. 113). He concludes of the era, “The explorations of the Europeans during the preceding century continued as the maritime powers of that continent followed up their earlier discoveries with aggressive colonialism. This is reflected in charts and maps of overseas areas, some sponsored by individuals or trading companies and others by newly founded official mapping agencies. Such documents were often tantamount to claiming areas through superior delineation and by imposition of place names of European origin” (pg. 124).The creation of censuses and other data collection changed mapmaking in the nineteenth century. Thrower writes, “The net result was that the first half of the nineteenth century, in particular, was a period of rapid progress along a broad front in mapping, especially in thematic mapping” (pg. 125). In addition to the data contained, “the great step forward during this period in printing was lithography, developed by Aloys C. Senefelder…This process allows the production of continuous tonal variation or shading, which is of great utility in cartography. It was used for some multiple-color and shaded-relief maps in the nineteenth century but came to its full realization through its marriage with photography, mostly a twentieth-century development” (pg. 140). Discussing photography, Thrower writes, “The use of aerial photographs beginning in the first half of the twentieth century has wrought changes in cartography comparable perhaps only to the effect of printing in the Renaissance or the use of satellites and the computer in the second half of the twentieth century” (pg. 173). He argues that photography will never replace topographic maps as “photos possess too much information; ideally a map represents a judicious selection of data for particular purposes” (pg. 175).Of the representational properties of maps, Thrower writes, “To humans capable of understanding their symbolization, maps and images convey information of greater or lesser importance depending on the needs and comprehension of the viewer” (pg. 186). Thrower concludes of computer mapping, “The low cost and high speed of creating maps, made without benefit of hands, are valuable facets of computer cartography, as are its flexibility and its objectivity” (pg. 228). Thrower concludes, “Beginning before the written record, cartography runs a thread through history. Maps have been made by so-called primitive as well as by sophisticated peoples. By no means have professional cartographers been the only contributors to this art and science; rather, because of its eclectic and universal nature, it has drawn its practitioners from many fields” (pg. 233). Further, “Many of our most important achievements – from philosophical considerations on the nature of the earth to setting foot on the lunar surface – have had cartographic expression and, in turn, have been advanced by cartography” (pg. 233).
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