On the shoulders of a Titan : viewing the world of the past in atlas structure
- Akerman, James Richard
- [Place of publication not identified] : [publisher not identified], 1991.
- Physical Description:
- 4 volumes (688 leaves).
- Atlases are repositories of seminal geographical information presented primarily in book form, and like all books they have the capacity of exposition— that is, of organizing their constituent elements in order to make plain larger patterns, grander thoughts,general concepts, or new ideas. Atlases reconcile these two functions,the encyclopedic and the expository, chiefly through their structure, the conscious or unconscious scheme according to which atlas maps are created, designed, and arranged. This thesis examines how the emergence of the atlas form is related to the upsurge of Western European interest in geography and cartography during the sixteenth century, and how, once the atlas idea had developed, atlas structure reflected the growth of national geographical consciousness. The atlas idea is a product of the "cartographic renaissance" of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, a period of extraordinary expansion in the cartographic activity of western Europe. The development of map printing, the stimuli of the "great discoveries, "the growth of state sponsorship of cartography, and the renewal of mathematical geography during this period greatly enlarged the stock of available maps and stimulated interest in published geographical works. The atlas emerged chiefly to help the growing number of cartographically literate Europeans organize the plethora of new maps generated into a comprehensible picture of the world. Several types of pre-atlas map sets can be identified, including illustrated pilot books, portolan "atlases," island and town books, regional map sets, and cosmographies. However, the appearance, of the atlas as a distinct cartographic form properly belongs to the later sixteenth century, when the first structural conventions were developed. As atlas publishing spread throughout Western Europe, atlas structure was increasingly tailored to the needs of specific national markets. Seventeenth- and eighteenth-century atlas-makers also learned to use atlas structure to manipulate regional identities in such a way as to promote the concept of the national-territorial state. French atlas structure, in particular, during the period 1589-1789, directly reflected the growth of France's power in Europe, France's internal consolidation, and the emergence of its overseas empire. [author abstract]
- Dissertation Note:
- Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University.
- Vol. 4 is 184 slides inserted in pockets., Vol. 3 contains a CD of the 184 slides. , and Slides scanned and backed up to preservation server. 2012
- Reproduction Note:
- Microfilm (positive). 1 reel 35mm., (University Microfilms 91-27291). lacks slides.
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