A History of the World in Twelve Maps

A History of the World in Twelve Maps Throughout history maps have been fundamental in shaping our view of the world and our place in it This title tells the story of our world through maps It examines the significance of maps from t

  • Title: A History of the World in Twelve Maps
  • Author: Jerry Brotton
  • ISBN: 9781846140990
  • Page: 361
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Throughout history, maps have been fundamental in shaping our view of the world, and our place in it This title tells the story of our world through maps It examines the significance of 12 maps from the mystical representations of ancient history to the satellite derived imagery of today.

    One thought on “A History of the World in Twelve Maps”

    1. Wow, I'm actually pretty impressed with myself for finishing this book. It certainly took a while. This isn't a reflection on the book's quality, more so it's style, since this is very much a textbook, massive massive textbook. As oppose to a lighter armchair historian/cartographer volumes like for instance Ken Jennings' lovely book on maps. This book is dense, crammed with information, at times overwhelmingly so. Then again is there really such a thing as too informative. There is so much here [...]

    2. Maps are sexy. They are rich founts of information in text and picture form: layers of semantics crowded on rectangles or squares of paper, pixels of possibility on a 3D representation of the world. They are an essential form of communication, but they are often overlooked. Let’s face it: we take maps for granted. This is especially true now that Google and other companies have made it easy to explore the Earth virtually. As these tools become commonplace, the technology fades into the backgro [...]

    3. A fascinating study of the history of maps, and of the concerns of the map-makers.For a further review: susannagoklikes/post/73Thanks to Net Galley for the ARC.

    4. One of the disadvantages of having a kindle, is not knowing the actual size of a book. This was a huge and challenging one. There is a lot of information in this book and one learns some pretty interesting stuff. But it is also a very "dry" reading. Boring most of the time. I had my share of "wows" - "wow, so this was how America appeared on the map" type of wows but that was it. A lot of dates and history facts which bored me to the core. DONT READ IT ON A KINDLE. In the end there are a lot of [...]

    5. Var droši teikt, ka cilvēks ir centies saprast savu vietu pasaulē jau no pašiem pirmsākumiem. Taču droši par kartēm kā tādām var sākt runāt tikai no senās Babilonas laikiem. Tieši no šī perioda ir saglabājies priekšmets, kuru var nosaukt par karti. Modernā ģeogrāfija aizsākās Ptolemaja laikos, un beidzas viss ar kartēm, kuru izveidošanai tiek izmantoti zemes mākslīgie pavadoņi. Karte tāda, kādu mēs pazīstam tagad, neradās uzreiz, lai cik tas loģiski nešķistu. [...]

    6. From the first known world map engraved on a cuneiform clay tablet to Google Earth's interactive three-dimensional image of the world, History of the World in Twelve Maps is a wonderful introduction to the history of cartography. As the title suggests, Jerry Brotton picked twelve maps and placed them in their historical context, dedicating one chapter to each map. At first sight, his choice may seem arbitrary enough - why pick the Hereford map and not the Ebstorf map, or Pietro Vesconte's map, o [...]

    7. I was fascinated by the idea of this: of course maps are a huge part of how we understand our world, and the way we format our maps is a big giveaway to the way we feel about the world. A map covered in clearly-marked borders marks separations and national boundaries; different maps with disputed borders show areas of conflict. Maps can reveal belonging and isolation and the limits of the human imagination.Unfortunately, Brotton’s writing is really dry, from my perspective, and I wasn’t alwa [...]

    8. This is not so much a history of the world in twelve maps as the stories of twelve maps and their places in history. The author's main premise is that maps are inherently subjective and are influenced by the culture that produces them and its motivations for that production. The premise is elegantly explored through twelve chapters, each with a single word title describing the main influence on the map's production. Thus we see medieval mappae mundi that set out to describe the world with refere [...]

    9. Good popular geography highlighting twelve maps which changed the conception of the known world, or which illustrate the way in which the mapmakers located themselves and their people in the world. Brotton makes sure to make this a global survey, with the Korean Kangnido World Map of 1402 and al-Idrisi's friendship with Roger II of Sicily resulting in the Book of Roger. Good work for generalists, with explanations of cartography and techniques.

    10. The author has chosen twelve maps that were each made for a different purpose and which show the state of cartography as it changes across cultures and over time, from ancient Babylon to Google Earth. He shows that the great turning points of our world’s history have been both reflected in and changed by maps. Each chapter focuses on a particular map and who made it and why. It becomes very clear that maps are tools that let the viewer see the world from the perspective of their maker. Brotton [...]

    11. 企圖宏大,但用二手資料談中文免不了用詞怪怪——作者說「北」和「背」同義源於「皇帝永遠背向北方」,但皇帝可是西元前三世紀才出現的啊(應當不是翻譯問題)。

    12. 3.5 stars rounded up. Jerry Brotton’s A History of the World in 12 Maps (paperback edition) has an interesting but narrow hypothesis. His intent is to limit his discussion to just world maps and thereby artificially promote his belief. I accept his argument that maps reflect the purpose of the map maker but I am not sure that his conclusion is as significant as he does. 12 Maps gave me a lot of history and a lot to think about. The writing tends to be ponderous. This makes it hard to be sure w [...]

    13. Nonostante la traduzione italiana a volte affannosa, conserva dell'originale la narrazione di grande respiro, ricchissima di informazioni ma sempre di piacevole lettura. La materia estremamente vasta costringe l'autore ad alcune scelte: si potra' forse obiettare che, eccetto il capitolo dedicato alla cultura coreana e cinese, resta un libro fortemente eurocentrico, ma del resto la cartografia moderna e' nata in Europa, pur con l'apporto di varie tradizioni. Forse ancora insufficiente e' lo spaz [...]

    14. Excellent overall, an interesting way of surveying the history of civilization. Each map requires enough context to be understood and appreciated that Brotton does end up providing something like a coherent history rather than just a series of snapshots - but it won't make much sense to anyone who doesn't have a pretty decent grasp of world history to begin with. It's no introduction, that's for sure, but it's rich with anecdote and keen observation.But I did find the repeated insistence of Bott [...]

    15. This is a very good book. It could potentially have been better titled as "A history of twelve world maps" or something like that, but I guess the current title works. The premise of the book is that a map of the world is a rich statement that speaks about places on the globe but also about the political, cultural, religious, and technological age in which it was developed. That means that world maps (and really all maps) are evidence of the times in which they are created, provided one takes th [...]

    16. In lots of ways this is a fascinating book, picking up on the trend to look at a historical subject in the context of a single item or area. It was first started by the book A History of the World in 100 Objects. There are lots of images of ancient maps, the detail and depth that the book goes into are impressive, and the credentials of the author are impeccable. And yet it doesn’t work for me. There is a mass of detail in here, from some of the very first maps by Ptolemy and other significant [...]

    17. Ok I seriously geeked out on this book! I do have a fascination for maps and geography, so i did relish this book. I guess this is in many ways the author's history choosing the maps that most interested him and putting them into their respective historical, political and religious context that defined their creation. To me part of this fascination with maps has to do with their sense of discovery, and of trying to make sense of our place and the definition they bring, these too are the definin [...]

    18. Brotton, Jerry (2012). A History of the World in Twelve Maps. London: Penguin. 2012. ISBN 9781846145704. Pagine 492. 23,04 €A History of the World in Twelve MapspenguinJerry Brotton è un giornalista dalla BBC e il libro (se capisco bene) è figlio di una serie televisiva, Maps: Power, Plunder and Possession.Il libro mantiene esattamente quello che promette: i suoi dodici capitoli illustrano ciascuno una tappa nella storia della cartografia e un problema nella rappresentazione dello spazio (e [...]

    19. As a child, I was fascinated with maps. I pored over the new Metrobus St. John's route map for weeks. Intending a few weeks' visit to Toronto in 1973, I spent months studying the City of Toronto map to be sure that I could identify at need the shortest distance between any two points. My uncle picked us up at the airport and immediately taught me a long-lasting lesson: the shortest physical distance between two points is not necessarily the fastest route. I still have all my state and city drivi [...]

    20. If you thought you knew your geography well, your assumptions are going to be shattered by this book. A long book indeed (could have been done with 100 pages less) but something that will open your eyes to the extraordinary journey of map making by humans from the clay tablets of Babylon to Google Maps of today. Some of the things you take for granted like the flat projections of a spheroid shaped earth is very interesting. The struggle of men to differentiate cosmological perspective to terrest [...]

    21. 3.5. Brotton looks at various landmark maps (Mercator's maps, the Cassini maps of France, Google Earth, the Mackinder world-axis map [which claimed Russia was the pivot on which world history turned]) to show how no map is purely objective. Instead, each responds to some social need — to advance knowledge, to show the glory of God's creation, to create evidence of a nation or an Empire, to further a political agenda. Informative but a bit too dense. While some of that is me — this is more th [...]

    22. Published in 2012, A History of the World in Twelve Maps looks at history through a very interesting perspective. That said, it isn't so much a history of the world, but more like a look at the way in which the world was perceived when the maps were created. For example, the Mappamundi of 1300 in Hereford maps the world from a religious perspective, the Kangnido map of 1470 centred on China sees Europe as a land of barbarians, and the later world maps centred on Europe often look upon ways of ca [...]

    23. This book begins with Ptolemy's map of the world in AD 150 and continues to look at world maps up until Google Earth. Jeremy Brotton relates how the world was seen by people at the time each of these individual maps was made and how each map maker tried to project the world. I enjoyed the latter chapters on more recent maps better. Even though I have a PhD in Geography, I still found my mind wandering sometime while reading this book as it looked at the different projections and what they had to [...]

    24. The 12 selected maps are a good choice for the book, and provide the needed variety for the author's central tenet that maps tell the story of their creators and their culture as much as the places they depict.The chapter on the Peters projection was enlightening, did not realise the negative reaction he got from contemporary cartographers.Only two maps from outside the western canon: would have liked a few more such as Polynesian sailing maps.

    25. Truly excellent book that examines how the notion of space can be both represented, and, indeed be produced. Particularly with the latter chapter, on Google, it indicates how each map, as basically a text of signs, can mediate forms of extension that are not traditionally 'geographical' but also digital too - and of course basically any other domain of extension populated by its own native objects.

    26. The cartographer straddles a range of disciplines: science, philosophy, politics and art. Jerry Brotton follows a story through each of these threads from ancient Babylon through to the Google Earth of today, tracing through twelve milestone maps. The story is a fascinating one although one can easily get lost in the detail. Unfortunately, for a book about maps the illustrations in this edition were a bit small to be easily studied.

    27. This was an extremely interesting read. Quite thought provoking about a subject that on the surface, seems really straightforward. It really makes one re-examine all of our concepts about how and why we view the world the way we do.

    28. It could have been better and maybe should have but while there is a long of good reading I couldn't help thinking it started to drag towards the end. This spoiled it for me.

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