Magazine article New Internationalist

Professor Arno Peters

Magazine article New Internationalist

Professor Arno Peters

Article excerpt

Arno Peters, best known for the Peters Map, died in Bremen, Germany, on 2 December 2002 at the age of 86.

The guiding doctrine which ran through his thinking is summed up by the word `equality'. His passionate belief in giving all an equal chance would seem innocent enough, but it was Peters' insistence on applying it in the face of well-established bigotry in a number of different disciplines which brought him enemies and not a little misunderstanding.

Peters considered that most world maps in common use - especially the Mercator Projection, beloved of school atlases - seriously misled the reader through their gross exaggeration of scale towards the poles. His `equal area' map redressed the balance, but the price to be paid was a distortion of shape, crushing the land towards the poles and stretching it across the equator. …

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