Mapping Latin America: A Cartographic Reader
edited by Jordana Dym and Karl Offen
University of Chicago Press, 2011
eISBN: 978-0-226-92181-5 | Cloth: 978-0-226-61821-0 | Paper: 978-0-226-61822-7
Library of Congress Classification GA641.M37 2011
Dewey Decimal Classification 912.8
Reference metadata exposed for Zotero via unAPI.
For many, a map is nothing more than a tool used to determine the location or distribution of something—a country, a city, or a natural resource. But maps reveal much more: to really read a map means to examine what it shows and what it doesn’t, and to ask who made it, why, and for whom. The contributors to this new volume ask these sorts of questions about maps of Latin America, and in doing so illuminate the ways cartography has helped to shape this region from the Rio Grande to Patagonia.
In Mapping Latin America,Jordana Dym and Karl Offen bring together scholars from a wide range of disciplines to examine and interpret more than five centuries of Latin American maps.Individual chapters take on maps of every size and scale and from a wide variety of mapmakers—from the hand-drawn maps of Native Americans, to those by famed explorers such as Alexander von Humboldt, to those produced in today’s newspapers and magazines for the general public. The maps collected here, and the interpretations that accompany them, provide an excellent source to help readers better understand how Latin American countries, regions, provinces, and municipalities came to be defined, measured, organized, occupied, settled, disputed, and understood—that is, how they came to have specific meanings to specific people at specific moments in time.
The first book to deal with the broad sweep of mapping activities across Latin America, this lavishly illustrated volume will be required reading for students and scholars of geography and Latin American history, and anyone interested in understanding the significance of maps in human cultures and societies.
Jordana Dym is associate professor of history and director of Latin American studies at Skidmore College and the author of From Sovereign Villages to National States: City, State and Federation in Central America, 1759–1838. Karl Offenis associate professor of geography at the University of Oklahoma.
“Mapping Latin America gathers together the foremost scholars of cartography and Latin American history. The novel format of the work allows Jordana Dym and Karl Offen to present a stunning range of cartographic materials, all carefully contextualized by the outstanding scholarship of the authors, which notably includes assessment of the contributions of indigenous cultures. Illustrating over five hundred years of mapping, this work is an indispensable resource for anyone interested in the history of Latin America.”
“Mapping Latin America offers a new kind of map history, one that brilliantly combines interdisciplinary approaches to maps that range over many centuries, producing insightful essays that ground the maps firmly in the societies that created and consumed them. It sets a significant new standard both for the history of cartography in Latin America and for the study of cartography itself.”
“In a single volume, featuring fifty-seven succinct yet authoritative chapters, Dym and Offen have not only remapped the field of Latin American historical cartography, but have also charted a new path for critical map studies. More than a millennium’s time depth and a continent’s expanse are surveyed with fascinating details and composite illumination. Area specialists, devoted cartophiles, and adventuresome readers in general will find this collection a delight.”