chapter  1
29 Pages

Cartographic Imaginaries: Mapping Latin(o) America’s Place in a World of Networked Digital Technologies

This chapter analyses the work of three Latin(o) American digital media artists who engage, albeit in very different ways, with the topographical, geopolitical and/or conceptual mapping of Latin America, both in relation to the history of cartographic representations of the region, and/or in relation to Latin America’s place in the industrial practices and cultural imaginaries of (networked) digital technologies. It engages with recent research on the (neo-)colonialist impulses of mapping, both within cartography as a discipline (Harley 1989, Crampton 2001) and specifically in the mapping of the Americas/Latin America (Mignolo 2000 and 2005, Offen and Dym 2011). It also engages with debates in internet studies that have critiqued the early, neo-imperialist, ‘frontiersman’ discourse of the internet (Sardar 1995, Loader 1997, Dodge and Kitchin 2001b, Paasonen 2009), as well as with continuing debates on mapping out online space, specifically with respect to the politics of top-level domain names (Steinberg and McDowell 2003) and graphical representations of the internet and its traffic flows (Harpold 1999).