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MAPS OF PARADISE. Alessandro Scafi. University of Chicago Press, 2013. 176 pp. with 120 ills. (96 col.). 28 x 22 cm. LC 2013-19830 ISBN 9780226082615 In English.
Publisher's description: For millennia humans have been inspired and motivated by visions of paradise... The notion of paradise is ubiquitous, and the world's literature provides a bounty of lore about a heaven on Earth, where the weather is mild, wine and sex are readily available, and everyone enjoys eternal youth. In Maps of Paradise, cultural historian Alessandro Scafi takes readers on a lush visual tour of these blissful places, charting how mapmakers have drawn from these tales to depict paradise in maps. Scafi guides readers from late antiquity to the present, describing each society's vision of paradise and revealing how each struggled to translate these visions into map form. He pays particular attention to maps from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance, a period that witnessed a remarkable evolution of paradise from a remote place impossible to detect with any precision, to a locale that could be depicted in recognizable maps. In addition, Scafi traces the changing perception of paradise over time, drawing heavily on historical debates about faith versus reason and theology versus philosophy, and demonstrates how these impacted the choices mapmakers made when constructing their maps.
Indexing: Western, International (Western Style) — Several Periods — Drawing and Watercolor, Several Media
Plans: 71
Worldwide Number: 155205
Hardcover $40.00x (libraries receive a 10% discount on this title)    

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