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On the map : a mind-expanding exploration of the way the world looks
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Human geography
World history
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Time Period
-- 21st century
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  Library Journal Review

Garfield's best-selling Just My Type (2011) was about typefaces. Now he's done the same for maps. The result is not deep history but it is pleasurable history nonetheless: readers will enjoy this romp through 16,000 years of mapmaking, beginning with a hunter's map found in a cave in northern Spain and proceeding all the way to today's GPS, Google Maps, video games, and Me Mapping. Aimed at educated lay readers who want both to nourish their mind and divert it, the book dispenses a good deal of information in the process: the problems the earth's curvature has posed in its representation, how maps reflect national and cultural biases, how maps have been used to solve problems like the spread of cholera in 1854 London, the technical progress made in mapping. "Maps are only human, after all," quips Garfield. VERDICT Readers of popular history will enjoy this entertaining and informative book. This is popular history but not "history light."[See Prepub Alert, 7/22/12.]-David Keymer, Modesto, CA (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Publishers Weekly Review

Innumerable modes of seeing the world unfold in this exuberant history of maps. Garfield (Just My Type) loosely follows the development of cartography, taking in the precociously scientific geography of the ancient Greeks; medieval England's Hereford Mappa Mundi, drenched in Christian allegory and teeming with mythical beasts; the Age of Exploration's heroic maps of newly discovered, sketchily drawn, and wrongly designated landmasses (America got its name from a cartographer's erroneous belief that Amerigo Vespucci discovered it); the 19th-century map that established cholera as a water-borne disease; modern GPS systems, and video game fantasy maps. Along the way he pursues diverting cartographical anecdotes and oddities, including the centuries-long consensus that California was an island, the lingering conceit that women can't read maps, and the appearance and disappearance of canals on maps of Mars. Garfield's coverage of this terrain, lavishly illustrated with reproductions of famous maps, is broad but paper-thin-more a meandering guided tour than a systematic survey. Still, his droll humor and infectious curiosity will keep readers engrossed as he uncovers surprising ways in which maps chart our imaginations as much as they do the ground underfoot. Photos, illus., maps. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Cartography enthusiasts rejoice: the bestselling author of Just My Type reveals the fascinating relationship between man and map. <p>Simon Garfield's Just My Type illuminated the world of fonts and made everyone take a stand on Comic Sans and care about kerning. Now Garfield takes on a subject even dearer to our fanatical human hearts: maps.</p> <p>Imagine a world without maps. How would we travel? Could we own land? What would men and women argue about in cars? Scientists have even suggested that mapping--not language--is what elevated our prehistoric ancestors from ape-dom. Follow the history of maps from the early explorers' maps and the awe-inspiring medieval Mappa Mundi to Google Maps and the satellite renderings on our smartphones, Garfield explores the unique way that maps relate and realign our history--and reflect the best and worst of what makes us human.</p> <p>Featuring a foreword by Dava Sobel and packed with fascinating tales of cartographic intrigue, outsize personalities, and amusing "pocket maps" on an array of subjects from how to fold a map to the strangest maps on the Internet, On the Map is a rich historical tapestry infused with Garfield's signature narrative flair. Map-obsessives and everyone who loved Just My Type will be lining up to join Garfield on his audacious journey through time and around the globe.</p>
Table of Contents
For the Love of Maps: Foreword    Dava Sobelp. 11
Introduction: The Map That Wrote Itselfp. 15
1What Great Minds Knewp. 21
How the ancient Greeks-Eratosthenes and Ptolemy-first worked out the size and shape of the world and our place upon it.
2The Men Who Sold the Worldp. 42
The day Britain's greatest cartographic treasure-the medieval Mappa Mundi-went to the auction houses to fix a leaky roof.
It's 1250, Do You Know Where You Are?p. 58
3The World Takes Shapep. 63
The world centers on Jerusalem-and the Poles appear.
Here Be Dragonsp. 72
4Venice, China and a Trip to the Moonp. 75
How the Italians became the world's greatest mapmakers, and then the Germans, and then the Dutch. And how a Venetian friar discovered the secrets of the East and ended up on the moon.
5The Mystery of Vinlandp. 87
Did Norse sailors really reach and map America before Columbus?
Or is the world's most curious map fakery's finest hour?
6Welcome to Amerigop. 103
In which Ptolemy reappears in Europe and America gets named after the wrong man.
California as an Islandp. 121
7What's the Good of Mercator?p. 125
How the world looked in 1569-and today, even if the UN still favors the Postel Azimuthal Equidistant.
Keeping It Quiet: Drake's Silver Voyagep. 135
8The World in a Bookp. 140
In which the Atlas becomes a craze in seventeenth-century Holland, is adopted by The Times, and then turns to agitprop.
Lions, Eagles and Gerrymandersp. 160
9Mapping a Cittee (without forder troble)p. 167
London gets the map bug, too, pioneers street mapping, and John Ogilby charts the course of every major road in Britannia.
10Six Increasingly Coordinated Tales of the Ordnance Surveyp. 181
Britain, spurred by Jacobite revolt, makes the Ordnance Survey, extending to India. But what is the symbol for a picnic site?
A Nineteenth-Century Murder Mapp. 200
11The Legendary Mountains of Kongp. 204
How an impassable mountain range spread and spread, until a French army officer found it wasn't there.
The Low-down Lying Case of Benjamin Morrellp. 220
12The Opening of America and the Gridding of Manhattanp. 223
How Lewis and Clark filled out the American canvas, and how New York plotted its future.
13Cholera and the Map that Stopped Itp. 235
How mapping played its part in identifying the cause of the disease.
Across Australia with Burke and Willsp. 246
14"X" Marks the Spot: Treasure Islandp. 252
Treasure maps in literature and life.
J.M. Barrie Fails to Fold a Pocket Mapp. 267
15The Worst Journey in the World to the Last Place to Be Mappedp. 269
How explorers found the South Pole without a map, and named the region after their families, friends and enemies.
Charles Booth Thinks You're Viciousp. 288
16Maps in All Our Hands: A Brief History of the Guidebookp. 293
The majestic foldout engravings of Murray and Baedeker give way to another cartographic dark age.
The Biggest Map of All: Beck's London Tubep. 307
17Casablanca, Harry Potter and Where Jennifer Aniston Livesp. 313
In which the Muppets perfect travel by map and we stalk the stars.
A Hare-raising Masqueradep. 324
18How to Make a Very Big Globep. 327
From scratch ... when you used to run a bowling alley.
Churchill's Map Roomp. 347
19The Biggest Map Dealer, the Biggest Map Thiefp. 352
How tempting are maps-and just what kind of dealers and thieves do they attract?
Women Can't Read Maps. Oh, Really?p. 366
20Driving into Lakes: How GPS Put the World in a Boxp. 372
How we learned to watch the dullest in-flight movie ever-and, with GPS, the Dutch once again took over the world's mapping.
The Canals of Marsp. 385
21Pass Go and Proceed Directly to Skyrimp. 394
Maps as games, from jigsaw puzzles to Risk, and why computer games may be the future of cartography.
22Mapping the Brainp. 410
What taxi drivers have to offer the world of the neuroscientist.
Epilogue: The Instant, Always-On, Me-Mapping of Everywherep. 424
How the Internet changed everything.
Acknowledgmentsp. 444
Bibliographyp. 446
Picture Creditsp. 449
Indexp. 450
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