Map Reading


"Maps are never value-free images; except in the narrowest Euclidean sense they are not in themselves either true or false. Both in the selectivity of their content and in their signs and styles of representation, maps are a way of conceiving, articulating and structuring the human world which is biased towards, promoted by, and exerts influence upon sets of social relations. By accepting such premises it becomes easier to see how appropriate they are to manipulation by the powerful in society."

- Harley. J. B. "Maps, Knowledge, and Power".

"Eurocentrism, like Renaissance perspectives in painting, envisions the world from a single privileged point. . . . Eurocentrism bifurcates the world into the "West and the Rest" and organizes everyday language into binaristic heirarchies implicitly flattering to Europe: our 'nations,' their 'tribes'; our 'religions,' their 'superstitions'; our 'culture,' their 'folklore'; our 'art,' their 'artifacts'; our 'demonstrations,' their 'riots'; our 'defense,' their 'terrorism.' "

- Shohat, Ella and Robert Stam. "Unthinking Eurocentrism".

"Maps made it easy for European states to carve up Africa and other heathen lands, to lay claim to land and rsources, and to ignore existing social and political structure. Knowledge is power and crude explorers' maps made possible treaties between nations with conflicting claims. That maps drawn up by diplomats and generals became a political reality lends an unintended irony to the aphorism that the pen is mightier than the sword."

- Monmonier, Mark. "How to Lie with Maps".

via moonriver
second map found here.