Visualising Antarctica as a place in time: From the geological sublime to ‘real time’

Yusoff, Kathryn (2005). Visualising Antarctica as a place in time: From the geological sublime to ‘real time’. Space and Culture, 8(4) pp. 381–398.



This article presents a chronogeographic account of the Antarctic spatialities that are inflected through the image of the RADARSAT map. Focusing on time as a spatializing operation within the visual geography of globalizing and globally available cartographies, the author questions the multiple geographies that must be considered in a geopolitical account of such a mapping. The subject of this topology is the "event" of the NASA RADARSAT map of Antarctica exhibiting the effects of global warming as a scientific and media event on the Web. Specifically the RADARSAT map documents destruction and also renders it innocuous through technologies of distance. This realization of geopolitical imperatives through scientific visualization reveals particular tensions and operations within Antarctic and global visual cultures. As a narrative cartography, it exhibits how geographic information systems operate in a plurality of visual regimes. The author concludes that the politics of visualizing Antarctica is embedded in the histories of its media production and in this reveals how time has a chronogeographic operation.

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