Hits and Misses

Hits and Misses

Friday, February 28, 2014

Duly Noted: Nick Danforth's "How the North Ended Up on Top of the World"

Starting with this one, "Duly Noted" posts will highlight others' work that I find interesting.  I hope you will enjoy these posts, too.

Reading Danforth's "How the North Ended Up on Top of the World," I suddenly recalled something I'd forgotten.  Close to twenty years ago, when my daughter was young, I put up on a wall Stuart McArthur's Universal Corrective Map of the World (1979).  McArthur is Australian, and his map reverses the relative positions of the continents:  instead of being "down under," Australia and South America and South Africa are up.  He had first drawn a map like this when he was 12, and his teacher made him redo it the "correct" way.  The wonderful thing is that McArthur went his own way undeterred and later corrected our all-too-prevalent North American perspective.  Why shouldn't Australia be front and center?

Nick Danforth's engaging essay takes off from McArthur's "corrective" map to provide a concise, entertaining, and well-illustrated account of how maps reveal far more than just the land masses they portray. 

Check out:  http://america.aljazeera.com/opinions/2014/2/maps-cartographycolonialismnortheurocentricglobe.html

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