From Maps to Metaphors: The Pacific World of George Vancouver
During the summers of 1792-94, George Vancouver and the crew of the British naval ships Discovery and Chatham mapped the northwest coast of North America from Baja California to Alaska. Taking the art and technique of distant voyaging to a new level, Vancouver eliminated the possibility of a northwest passage and his remarkably precise surveys completed the outline of the Pacific. But to map an area is to appropriate it - to begin to bring it under control - and Vancouver's charts of the northwest coast were part of a process of economic exploitation and cultural disruption. The chapters in this illuminating book are written from a variety of perspectives and provide new insights on many aspects of Vancouver's voyages, from the technology employed to the complex political and power relationships among European explorers and the Native leadership.
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