Why the North is taking itself too serious

Map-making has always had the problem of trying to fit the surface of a (roughly) ball-shaped object on a flat piece of paper.

A map reflective of the true proportions of our planet would look something like this:

However, most traditional world maps look like the following. It has the map (and thus the depicted land masses) stretched to fit the rectangular shape.

This in effect enlarges or over-represents the land masses that are farthest away from the equator. Because the continents in the north are closer to the North Pole than the continents in the South are to the South Pole, this exaggerates the size (and thus the implied might and importance) of the Northern hemisphere in contrast with the countries close to the equator and in the Southern hemisphere.

About Andreas Moser

Travelling the world and writing about it. I have degrees in law and philosophy, but I'd much rather be a writer, a spy or a hobo.
This entry was posted in Politics, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Why the North is taking itself too serious

  1. John Erickson says:

    And yet one of the countries that benefits most from the mis-projection is Canada, a country that would pride itself on its’ humility, if they were so boastful. Pity none of their sensibility has managed to seep southward – especially toward the US capitol. Or up and over the pole into the Medvedev-hosted Princedom of Putin.
    Of course, you could try to level the same charges, albeit in the other hemisphere, to Australia – but they are just so delightfully unpretentious! :)
    (Maybe being upside-down helps! :D)

  2. Pingback: Upside down? | Publish or Perish – Andreas Moser's Blog

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