Flow Mapping through the Times: The Transition from Harness to Nazi Propaganda

Zef Segal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


One of the most commonly used types of maps today are flow maps, which simultaneously depict movement in time, place, and volume on a geographical map, as seen
in GPS navigation devices. This type of map-making was invented independently
during the 1830-1840s by three railway engineers from the United Kingdom, Belgium,
and France. However, as this chapter argues, the growing popularity of the genre
had little to do with the intent of the three pioneers. By looking at the context, in
which flow maps appeared, rather than the technique used to design them, the
chapter shows the importance of culture, politics, and ideology in understanding
the changing meanings of flow maps during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationMotion in Maps, Maps in Motion:
Subtitle of host publicationMapping Stories and Movement Through Time
EditorsZef Segal, Bram Vannieuwenhuyze
PublisherAmsterdam University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9789048542956
StatePublished - 2020


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