Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age

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9780226254784: Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age

In Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age, Elizabeth A. Sutton explores the fascinating but previously neglected history of corporate cartography during the Dutch Golden Age, from ca. 1600 to 1650. She examines how maps were used as propaganda tools for the Dutch West India Company in order to encourage the commodification of land and an overall capitalist agenda.

Building her exploration around the central figure of Claes Jansz Vischer, an Amsterdam-based publisher closely tied to the Dutch West India Company, Sutton shows how printed maps of Dutch Atlantic territories helped rationalize the Dutch Republic’s global expansion. Maps of land reclamation projects in the Netherlands, as well as the Dutch territories of New Netherland (now New York) and New Holland (Dutch Brazil), reveal how print media were used both to increase investment and to project a common narrative of national unity. Maps of this era showed those boundaries, commodities, and topographical details that publishers and the Dutch West India Company merchants and governing Dutch elite deemed significant to their agenda. In the process, Sutton argues, they perpetuated and promoted modern state capitalism.

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About the Author:

Elizabeth A. Sutton is assistant professor of art history at the University of Northern Iowa.

Review:

"In this volume, Sutton brings an art historical lens to examine how power and visual media combine to underscore the 'rationalization and organization of a particular economic system': capitalism. Overall, the book offers readers a kaleidoscopic view of Dutch cartographic representation of the Atlantic world, with a special focus on how maps served as vessels for a prevailing discourse about civic virtue and national pride, as exercised through commercial expansion." (Itinerio)

"Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age teases out the relationship between maps and land in an earlier political culture. The strengths of Sutton's book are first and foremost its treatment of Dutch intellectual and juridical themes and secondarily its focus on the American Dutch maps to complement the better known East Indian maps. The book is a refreshing complement to books which start from the maps, and I enjoyed particularly its new intellectual focus." (Journal of Historical Geography)

"Sutton deftly places Visscher’s output in the broader media landscape of the time that also included pamphlets, learned treatises, and writings on political theory. Her analysis of Visscher’s corporate cartography is lucid and convincing. Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age is a useful addition to the expanding library of the Dutch contribution to the early modern Atlantic world." (Imago Mundi)

"Sutton's abilities as a scholar and writer are clear from the outset....These historical events and trends are not only relevant, but crucial for understanding our own democratic and capitalist society. This insight and evaluation of present circumstances is the true achievement of the work. We as historians often shy away from commenting on current events, and believe that laying bare the historical foundations of particular subject is enough. Sutton's work serves as a clarion call that perhaps we need to be braver as a discipline. From the outset she is forthright about her biases and direct with argument. The work is still rooted in historical analysis, but the repercussions on the present are evident and explicit. As Sutton is so clear with her argument (to great effect), let me be equally forthright with mine: read this book!" (Robert Tiegs H-Net)

"Sutton expertly summarizes the complicated structures of seventeenth-century Dutch government and the legal history of property, centring her arguments on Visscher’s maps of the Netherlands and Dutch colonial ambitions in the New World. Her work on land, territory and private property in Visscher’s maps in the context of Grotian law offers necessary reading for current scholars and students of the seventeenth-century Dutch Republic." (Art History)

"For a short concise piece of work Sutton’s monograph accomplishes the aims it sets out at the start through the use of a focused case study approach." (Historical Geography)

"In Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age, Sutton makes a powerful argument for the Dutch West India Company’s coercive use of visual imagery to rationalize capitalism, the commodification of land, and colonization in Africa and the Americas." (CAA Reviews)

"There are still people who view the Dutch in their Golden Age as a small, spunky nation that stood up to absolutism, Inquisition, and servile economic relations and succeeded in establishing a society founded on new, more open, tolerant, and economically rational principles. Elizabeth Sutton is not among them. She is not so easily deceived by the self-representations generated by the young Dutch Republic and it is the purpose of this book to reveal through some of its celebrated cartographic output the origins of the capitalist oppression that is the lineal descendant of the miseries of the American late capitalism we now endure." (Renaissance Quarterly)

“With Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age, Sutton analyzes the history of the Dutch republic and the maps that supported its capitalist and colonial society through a lens that puts the seventeenth century in chilling conversation with our world today. Her close readings of illustrated maps and early modern texts, ranging in subject from Calvinist theology to property law and political philosophy, create a compelling argument for the role maps played in amplifying the power of Amsterdam elites.” (Dawn Odell, Lewis & Clark College)

“Sutton offers a provocative and compelling examination of the ways Dutch capitalists in the seventeenth century deployed maps as tools for their dominance over the land and other people, as well as ways to express their power and wealth. A strong and stimulating work, Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age is an excellent addition to the fields of art history and the history of cartography.”  (Robert Karrow, Newberry Library)

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2015. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age, Elizabeth A. Sutton explores the fascinating but previously neglected history of corporate cartography during the Dutch Golden Age, from ca. 1600 to 1650. She examines how maps were used as propaganda tools for the Dutch West India Company in order to encourage the commodification of land and an overall capitalist agenda. Building her exploration around the central figure of Claes Jansz Vischer, an Amsterdam-based publisher closely tied to the Dutch West India Company, Sutton shows how printed maps of Dutch Atlantic territories helped rationalize the Dutch Republic s global expansion. Maps of land reclamation projects in the Netherlands, as well as the Dutch territories of New Netherland (now New York) and New Holland (Dutch Brazil), reveal how print media were used both to increase investment and to project a common narrative of national unity. Maps of this era showed those boundaries, commodities, and topographical details that publishers-state-sponsored corporate bodies-and the Dutch West India Company merchants and governing Dutch elite deemed significant to their agenda. In the process, Sutton argues, they perpetuated and promoted modern state capitalism. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780226254784

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2015. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In Capitalism and Cartography in the Dutch Golden Age, Elizabeth A. Sutton explores the fascinating but previously neglected history of corporate cartography during the Dutch Golden Age, from ca. 1600 to 1650. She examines how maps were used as propaganda tools for the Dutch West India Company in order to encourage the commodification of land and an overall capitalist agenda. Building her exploration around the central figure of Claes Jansz Vischer, an Amsterdam-based publisher closely tied to the Dutch West India Company, Sutton shows how printed maps of Dutch Atlantic territories helped rationalize the Dutch Republic s global expansion. Maps of land reclamation projects in the Netherlands, as well as the Dutch territories of New Netherland (now New York) and New Holland (Dutch Brazil), reveal how print media were used both to increase investment and to project a common narrative of national unity. Maps of this era showed those boundaries, commodities, and topographical details that publishers-state-sponsored corporate bodies-and the Dutch West India Company merchants and governing Dutch elite deemed significant to their agenda. In the process, Sutton argues, they perpetuated and promoted modern state capitalism. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780226254784

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