Regionalism and nationalism in the railway cartography of mid-nineteenth century Germany

Zef Segal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article concerns German railway cartography in the mid-nineteenth century and its effects on spatio-political perceptions. The evolution of a railway system in Germany, from isolated single routes into national and ultimately international networks, has been customarily linked to the political issue of unification in 1871. The infrastructural changes triggered the introduction of new maps and map signs, which overshadowed other national and political signs and should not be seen as a simple means to a nationalist end. By examining the developing iconography of railways and railway networks, I argue that railways were a cause of deterritorialization for regions and states and for the vision of a unified Germany.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-61
Number of pages16
JournalImago Mundi
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Imago Mundi Ltd.


  • Deterritorialization
  • German states
  • Germany
  • International coNnections
  • Mapping railways
  • National railways
  • National unification
  • Nineteenth century
  • Particularism
  • Route maps
  • Segmented maps
  • State railways
  • Systems maps
  • Territorial identity
  • Territorial integration


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