Geographies of Mars

Geographies of Mars

Seeing and Knowing the Red Planet

by K. Maria D. Lane

Hardback Publication Date: 23/12/2010

  $112.00
One of the first maps of Mars, published by an Italian astronomer in 1877, with its pattern of canals, fueled belief in intelligent life-forms on the distant red planet - a hope that continued into the 1960s. Although the Martian canals have long since been dismissed as a famous error in the history of science, K. Maria D. Lane argues that there was nothing accidental about these early interpretations. Indeed, she argues, the construction of Mars as an incomprehensibly complex and engineered world both reflected and challenged dominant geopolitical themes during a time of major cultural, intellectual, political, and economic transition in the Western world. "Geographies of Mars" telescopes in on a critical period in the development of the geographical imagination, when European imperialism was at its zenith and American expansionism had begun in earnest. Astronomers working in the new observatories of the American Southwest or in the remote heights of the South American Andes were inspired, Lane finds, by their own physical surroundings, and they used representations of the Earth's arid landscapes to establish credibility for their observations of Mars.
With this simple shift to the geographer's point of view, Lane deftly explains some of the most perplexing stances on Mars taken by familiar protagonists such as Percival Lowell, Alfred Russel Wallace, and Lester Frank Ward. A highly original exploration of geography's spatial dimensions at the beginning of the twentieth century, "Geographies of Mars" offers a new view of the mapping of far-off worlds.
ISBN:
9780226470788
9780226470788
Category:
Solar system: the Sun & planets
Format:
Hardback
Publication Date:
23-12-2010
Language:
English
Publisher:
The University of Chicago Press
Country of origin:
United States
Pages:
272
Dimensions (mm):
229x152x25mm
Weight:
0.52kg

Click 'Notify Me' to get an email alert when this item becomes available

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review Geographies of Mars.