Maps (briefly)

A hand drawn map of the world marked the starting point of my research project – an immediate way of identifying a nascent theme from recent travels.

For me, maps as a means of representing ideas beyond geographic delineation are endlessly diverting and so, briefly, some relevant and recently discovered* cartographic representations: 

POLITICAL AMBITION: 'Outline of (the) Post-War New World Map' 1942 created by Maurice Gomberg*
Created at the time of the US’s entry into the Second World War, Maurice Gomberg’s map envisages the victorious Allies as leaders of global factions.  The USA, USSR and British Commonwealth are appointed as the dominant powers. Korea is subsumed as part of the United Republics of China, (a federation including all parts of present-day China, Korea, Thailand and the former French colony of Indochina).  Japan has been ‘quarantined’ along with the fellow axis states of Germany and Italy, in anticipation of eventual readmission into the family of nations that make up the New World Order.

PHOTOGRAPHIC DEDUCTION: The palpable economic disparity
                                                   between North & South Korea* 
South Korea’s economic assent, achieved in opposition to the Communist North is immediately tangible in the night-time satellite image above.  The massive conurbation of Seoul is an exploding star beneath the border.
Above the contentious 38th parallel, only the capital Pyongyang is distinguishable as a solitary speck of light.

GRAPHIC SYMBOLISM: Korea as a tiger*
I’m unsure about the origins of this image whereby geographic boundaries have been appropriated to the promote idea of a strong, powerful (and united) nation.  Apparently, in some Japanese maps from the colonial era Korea was depicted as a rabbit.  Though I have yet to see one myself, I imagine it might look something like this...

*Courtesy of strangemaps

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