The Networked Cosmos: Sebastian Münster's City Views

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The Networked Cosmos: Sebastian Münster's City Views

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Title: The Networked Cosmos: Sebastian Münster's City Views
Author: van Putten, Jasper Cornelis ORCID  0000-0001-9325-3215
Citation: van Putten, Jasper Cornelis. 2015. The Networked Cosmos: Sebastian Münster's City Views. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard University, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences.
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Abstract: My dissertation concerns the networks of production of early modern books of city views. Its focus is the emerging national and regional identities of the makers of the views in Sebastian Münster’s Cosmographia (1544-1628) and competing French city books from the same period. To study the networks I have adopted an interdisciplinary approach that aims to give a measured attention to all individuals involved in the production of the views (cosmographers, patrons, artists, draftsmen, woodcutters, printers). I analyze (1) national myths to which patrons and artists aligned their views, (2) patrons’ depiction of territory and genealogy in their views, (3) national symbols depicted on the views by draftsmen and woodcutters, and (4) draftsmen’s intentional application of “Deutsch” [German] or “Welsch” [French/Italian] styles. Finally, I have mapped views of the all editions of the city books in GIS, in order to visualize and analyze their networks of production over time. It emerges from this inquiry that a necessary condition for the collaborative production of books of city views was the alignment of the diverse interests (scientific, political, dynastic, economic, artistic) of all parties involved along a single unified goal, here the production of a shared national identity.
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