New Map of Empire: How Britain Imagined America Before Independence


Product Details

Harvard University Press
Publish Date
6.4 X 9.3 X 1.4 inches | 1.9 pounds

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About the Author

S. Max Edelson is Associate Professor of History at the University of Virginia.


The New Map of Empire rests on massive archival research and a close and sensitive appreciation of more than 250 maps, presented online in an ingenious digital atlas. With great clarity and force, Edelson describes how an activist Board of Trade initiated this surge of mapping to forge a new sense of the connectedness of British empire. For all their promise as tools of imperial power, Edelson shows, these maps frequently camouflaged imperial weaknesses. In their turn, American Revolutionaries were able to convert this British cartographic bonanza to their own warlike, administrative, imperial, and ideological purposes after 1776.--Linda Colley, author of Captives: Britain, Empire, and the World, 1600-1850
The New Map of Empire makes a major contribution to our understanding of colonial America. Edelson has compiled an extraordinary collection of maps that illuminate the British Atlantic world, and puts them in context superbly to describe the empire's wider cartographic history. The companion website featuring these maps is quite simply spectacular. By telling the story of the officials, surveyors, and army and navy officers who mapped America, Edelson reveals the crucial role played by the Crown in the coming of the American Revolution.--Eliga H. Gould, author of Among the Powers of the Earth: The American Revolution and the Making of a New World Empire