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Many geographies, such digital, wow! Reading digital multiplicity into Geography: an introduction.

            When we came together to devise a project, it became immediately clear that each of us used geography in our work in unique ways.  Immediately maps and mapping technology came to our minds, but aren’t there other sorts of geography beyond Cartesian location?  As humanists, we read multiple texts from the archives of our research.  Can we also read multiple geographies into our work?

            This series illuminates some of the ways in which we individually make sense of the juxtaposition between geography and digital modes of knowledge production and inquiry.  We’ll illustrate that mapping remains an important part of our work, whether we utilize maps as a framing by which to teach a geographic visual literacy or to read multiple ways in which maps do work in the world.  We wonder aloud if we can conceive of a non-Cartesian space for understanding the role of place in social media, and likewise what roles social media plays in the dissemination of geographic visualization.  We also show examples of visualizing poetic geography, mapping long lost cities buried within our oldest tales as well as “touring” spaces through story maps and geolocation.

            Each of us does very different things, often framed through maps. But each of us also struggles to simultaneously hold geography as including both space as location, and place as socio-contextual historical relationships.  The digital is often framed as placeless and somehow outside of the physical realm.  Our intention here is to show otherwise, through a kaleidoscope of different approaches.

            We hope you enjoy it.

--The Geography Working Group, HASTAC Scholars 2014

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