Thomas Sutherland
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Mapping the space of flows
Considerations and consequences

Examining the growing interest in the mapping of ‘flows’, in terms of its historical context and contemporary import, this chapter proposes that such practices reflect and reinforce a theoretical discourse of protean fluidity (with an often quasi-metaphysical tenor). All too frequently, this discourse is left under-analysed; taken for granted as both an empirical banality and transcendental certainty. The metaphor of fluidity, it is argued, has considerable utility, especially in relation to the new modalities of cartography arising from Geographic Information Systems (GIS). However, this aid to understanding needs to be recognised as a particular way of spatially representing time, one that may normalise certain ideological precepts.

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Time for mapping

Cartographic temporalities

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