Magazine article Americas (English Edition)

From the Editor

Magazine article Americas (English Edition)

From the Editor

Article excerpt

The 1507 Waldseemuller world map, the first one depicting the New World and referring to it as "America," served as an immense provocation. While the Atlantic coast of South America and the Caribbean was depicted in surprising detail, and the vastness of the ocean that divides the Americas and Asia was evident, the Western Hemisphere was largely portrayed as a void, a tabula rasa that challenged and abetted European society in its conquest and settlement of the New World. Over the next centuries, the exchange of a multitude of physical and cultural elements, some that proved costly if not deadly to native populations, gave shape to New World societies and marked their passage through time. A few of those monuments, cultural objects, and natural products are treated in these pages of Americas.

Anne Tennant tells the story of Juan Bautista Antonelli, the preeminent military architect of the sixteenth century, who designed and built the monumental fortifications throughout the Caribbean that allowed Spain to counter the piratical attacks of other Europeans and to hold on to its newly won empire. And as both the monuments and the most consistent symbols of European settlement during the last century, Judy Waytiuk relates current efforts to preserve the grain elevators that pepper the prairies of western Canada. …

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