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Mappaemundi as Self-Portrait: Winning Student Paper

  • 23 Oct 2020
  • 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
  • Online!

Mappaemundi as Self-Portrait:

Deference and Dissidence in the Worlds of Guaman Poma and Urbano Monte

Arman Kassam, the winner of this year's California Map Society  student essay competition, will present a version of his paper from Stanford's David Rumsey Map Center on Friday, October 23 at 3:00 pm. 

In this online talk, Arman plans on discussing the fascinating intersections between two different amateur cartographers on separate ends of the early 16th-century Spanish Empire. The stories of Urbano Monte, a Milanese nobleman engaged in a personal project concerning universal knowledge, and Guaman Poma, a Quechua nobleman who subversively asserted his right to territory in the Nueva CorĂ³nica, intertwine in unexpected ways. Both came from noble lineages, lived in territories recently brought under Habsburg control, and cared deeply about humanist erudition. Importantly, both also found in the world map a useful medium for their projects of political power and erudition. Rather than merely showing the differences of their interests, these amateur world maps reflect back on their authors as self-portraits, testaments to individuals finding themselves in an ever-globalizing world.

Arman Kassam is a junior at Stanford, majoring in History and prospectively minoring in Iranian Studies. He is passionate about a handful of things: cartography, The Lord of the Rings, traditional Gujarati dance, and Avatar: The Last Airbender. He is currently learning from Durham, North Carolina with his parents and - to his utter delight - his two dogs, Storm and Smokey.

2:45pm PT: Zoom opens
3:00pm PT: Talk by Arman Kassam, followed by Q&A

Please use the RSVP link at this page to register.

Image detail from Urbano Monte, Tavola XXXXII. Che Ha Sua Superiore La Tavola. XXIIII. Libro Terzo. 1587.

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