Mapping with Words: Anglo-Canadian Literary Cartographies, 1789-1916
Mapping with Words re-conceptualizes settler writing as literary cartography. The topographical descriptions of early Canadian settler writers generated not only picturesque and sublime landscapes, but also verbal maps. These worked to orient readers, reinforcing and expanding the cartographic order of the emerging colonial dominion.
Drawing upon the work of critical and cultural geographers as well as literary theorists, Sarah Wylie Krotz opens up important aesthetic and political dimensions of both familiar and obscure texts from the nineteenth century, including Thomas Cary’s Abram’s Plains, George Monro Grant’s Ocean to Ocean, and Susanna Moodie’s Roughing it in the Bush. Highlighting the complex territoriality that emerges from their cartographic aesthetics, Krotz offers fresh readings of these texts, illuminating their role in an emerging spatial imaginary that was at once deeply invested in the production of colonial spaces and at the same time enmeshed in the realities of confronting Indigenous sovereignties.
- World Rights
- Page Count: 272 pages
- Dimensions: 6.3in x 0.8in x 9.3in
Reviews“What can geographers learn from Mapping with Words? Through carefully selected texts, analyzed through a literary cartographic approach, Krotz helps us understand geographical change in particular places in Canada, as the land was being colonized. She shows what happens on the ground, in lived experience and observation, as new people and new forces arrive and disrupt existing Indigenous society. She draws out a deeper geographical life in particular regions, which leads to a fuller understanding of their geography of today.”
The Canadian Geographer
"Elegantly written, Mapping with Words is a pleasure to read. Its union of geography and literature is valuable, and scholars will benefit from close readings that illustrate colonial processes of territorial re-inscription as considerably fraught. Aimed at Early Canadianists, Mapping with Words will also appeal to readers of historical geography, environmental studies, and Indigenous Studies."
Jenny Kerber, Department of English and Film Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University
"Mapping with Words is a model of what literary or rather cultural criticism ought to be today, a genuinely original and fascinating contribution to Canadian Studies: accessible, politically, culturally, and historically aware, and fun to read."
Christoph Irmscher, Department of English, Indiana University, Bloomington
Author InformationSarah Wylie Krotz is an assistant professor in the Department of English and Film Studies at the University of Alberta.
Table of contents
Introduction: Maps and Text-Maps
1. Illuminating the Horizon:
The Cartographic Aesthetics of Two Early Long Poems
2. The Land Up Close:
Mapping Disorder in Roughing It in the Bush
3. The Intimate Geography of Wilderness:
The Spatiality of Catharine Parr Traill’s Botanical Inventories
4. Writing and Reading the Northwest:
George Monro Grant and the Palimpsest of Settler Space
5. The Poet in Treaty Territory:
The Literary Cartography of “The Height of Land”
Conclusion: Maps and Counter-Maps (On Getting Lost)
Appendix of Figures
Subjects and Courses