This is the first intellectual history of a subject which over the last five centuries has played a significant role in the development of Western civilization. The author describes the activities of the explorers and map-makers of Renaissance and early modern Europe; the role of geography during the Scientific Revolution, the Enlightenment and the Darwinian Revolution; and the interactions between geography and empire building in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Throughout the book the development of geographical thought and practice is portrayed against the broader social and intellectual context of the times. Since 1945 activity in the subject has been intense: David Livingstone provides a critical account of the trends, developments and occasional revolutions by which geography has emerged as a multi-faceted discipline offering unique and revealing perspectives on a wide range of pressing social and environmental issues.
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David Livingstone is the author of Nathaniel Southgate Shaler and the Culture of American Science (1987), Darwin's Forgotten Defenders (1987) and The Preadamite Theory (1992), and of many articles on the history of goegraphy and the history of science. He is Reader in the School of Geosciences, at the Queen's University of Belfast.
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