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Geography and Vision

Geography and Vision
Denis E. Cosgrove

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Leading geographer Denis Cosgrove provides a series of personal reflections on the complex connections between seeing, imagining and representing the world geographically. In a series of eloquent essays he draws upon pictorial images - including maps, sketches, cartoons, paintings, and photographs - to explore and elaborate upon the many and varied ways in which the vast and varied earth, and at times the heavens beyond, have been both imagined and represented as a place of human habitation. The essays include reflections upon geographical discovery; urban cartography and utopian visions; ideas of landscape and the shaping of America; wilderness and masculinity; conceptions of the Pacific; and the imaginative grip of the Equator. Extensively illustrated, this engaging work reveals the richness of the geographical imagination as expressed over the past five centuries.

Author Info

Denis Cosgrove is Alexander von Humboldt Professor of Geography at the University of California Los Angeles. A founding editor of the journal Ecumene (now Cultural Geographies), his previous books include The Palladian Landscape (1993), Social Formations and Symbolic Landscape (2nd edn 1998), Mappings (editor, 1999) and Apollo's Eye (2001), which won the Association of American Publishers Professional and Scholarly Publishing Award in Geography & Earth Sciences. He is co-editor, with Veronica della Dora, of High Places: Cultural GeographiesGeographies of Mountains and Ice (I.B.Tauris, forthcoming).


"'Among modern geographers who have re-imagined, re-charged and extended their subject, Denis Cosgrove is pre-eminent, and his understanding of landscape, in particular, the most vital contribution. His essays in Geography and Vision explore how we see, envision and image the world. The range of his chosen topics is both their challenge and their excitement
from Renaissance arcadias to Ruskin's mythopoietic science, from meditations on the invisible Equator to extra-terrestrial cosmography for the twenty-first century, from American nature and urban mapping to the idea of the Pacific as a single geographical region. He manoeuvres nimbly between the facts of people and places and the metaphors that have been made of them. Conceptual complexities negotiate with pictorial images. And the essay form, upon which he meditates and in which he performs so agilely, is the ideal medium for Cosgrove's own mapping of the dialogues between "eyewitness knowledge and interpretation" and the "ideas, hopes and fears of imagined geographies".' John Dixon Hunt, Professor of the History & Theory of Landscape, School of Design, University of Pennsylvania 'Geography and Vision presents a compelling account of our imaginative encounter with the world. Through a series of wide-ranging and lucid essays on landscape and mapping, Denis Cosgrove reflects on the complex relations between seeing, imagining and representing the world geographically within the Western tradition. This book highlights the richness and the power of the geographical imagination, exploring the many ways in which it has shaped the cultures and landscapes we inhabit. Superbly crafted and well-illustrated, it will be a key point of reference for scholars across the arts and humanities for years to come.' Felix Driver, Professor of Human Geography, Royal Holloway, University of London 'Wise and illuminating, with broad interdisciplinary appeal, Geography and Vision is a richly rewarding book. A work of wide ranging scholarship in Europe and America, on different periods and places, the book's linked essays address a spectrum of representations, including maps, designs and art works, to explore the power and place of visual knowledge in the geographical imagination. Hopes and fears about nature, environment and globalism are framed in a cultural perspective which is both attentive to particular circumstances and to their place in broader terrestrial and celestial schema. Gracefully written, Geography and Vision keeps in sight humanity's sense of wonder about the world and its workings.' Stephen Daniels, Professor of Cultural Geography, University of Nottingham and Director AHRC Landscape and Environment Programme."

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.
Series: International Library of Human Geography

ISBN: 9781850438472
Publication Date: 29 Apr 2008
Number of Pages: 256
Height: 234
Width: 156

ISBN: 9781850438465
Publication Date: 29 Apr 2008
Number of Pages: 256
Height: 234
Width: 156
Illustrations: Illustrations (some col.), maps

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