The concept of mental maps is used in several disciplines including geography, psychology, history, linguistics, economics, anthropology, political science, and computer game design. However, until now, there has been little communication between these disciplines and methodological schools involved in mental mapping.
Mental Maps: Geographical and Historical Perspectives addresses this situation by bringing together scholars from some of the related fields. Ute Schneider examines the development of German geographer Heinrich Schiffers’ mental maps, using his books on Africa from the 1930s to the 1970s. Efrat Ben-Ze’ev and Chloé Yvroux investigate conceptions of Israel and Palestine, particularly the West Bank, held by French and Israeli students. By superimposing large numbers of sketch maps, Clarisse Didelon-Loiseau, Sophie de Ruffray, and Nicolas Lambert identify „soft“ and „hard“ macro-regions on the mental maps of geography students across the world. Janne Holmén investigates whether the Baltic and the Mediterranean Seas are seen as links or divisions between the countries that line their shores, according to the mental maps of high school seniors. Similarly, Dario Musolino maps regional preferences of Italian entrepreneurs. Finally, Lars-Erik Edlund offers an essayistic account of mental mapping, based on memories of maps in his own family.
This edited volume book uses printed maps, survey data and hand drawn maps as sources, contributing to the study of human perception of space from the perspectives of different disciplines.
The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue of the Journal of Cultural Geography.