Denis Wood, Street Lights: We stubbed a brush loaded with ink at the location of every street light in the neighborhood to suggest the pools of light you swim through walking the streets of Boylan Heights at night. This American Life. Oct. 22, 2007, Accessed Dec. 26, 2020. https://www.thisamericanlife.org/extras/mapping.

Mapping by Five Senses December 26, 2020

This American Life podcast presents stories about people who make maps of the world in the traditional way, based on seeing things, and non-traditional ways based on our other senses of smell, sound, touch, and taste.

“It is a living organism. It’s absolutely what it is. Here’s a map that shows the pools of light cast by each one of the street lamps at night. And it’s black, and you have these pools of light.”

Link: https://www.thisamericanlife.org/110/mapping

It may well take the full range of senses to open up new possibilities for mapping beyond street maps. This series reminds us that a poetics of cartography is still possible.


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