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A new map of wonders : a journey in search of modern marvels

Author: Caspar Henderson
Publisher: Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, 2017. ©2017
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"We live in a world that is known, every corner thoroughly explored. But has this knowledge cost us the ability to wonder? Wonder, Caspar Henderson argues, is at its most supremely valuable in just such a world because it reaffirms our humanity and gives us hope for the future. That's the power of wonder, and that's what we should aim to cultivate in our lives. But what are the wonders of the modern world?  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Henderson, Caspar.
New map of wonders.
Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, 2017
(DLC) 2017013309
(OCoLC)975474937
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Caspar Henderson
ISBN: 9780226292076 022629207X
OCLC Number: 1019874135
Description: 1 online resource (371 pages) : illustrations, maps
Contents: Introduction --
The Rainbow and the star: light --
The Gathering of the universal light into luminous bodies: life --
Three billion beats: heart --
A Hyperobject in the head: brain --
Edge of the orison: self --
Of maps and dreams: world --
Future wonders: adventures with perhapsatron --
Afterword: The Wonderer and his shadow.
Responsibility: Caspar Henderson.

Abstract:

"We live in a world that is known, every corner thoroughly explored. But has this knowledge cost us the ability to wonder? Wonder, Caspar Henderson argues, is at its most supremely valuable in just such a world because it reaffirms our humanity and gives us hope for the future. That's the power of wonder, and that's what we should aim to cultivate in our lives. But what are the wonders of the modern world? Henderson's brilliant exploration borrows from the form of one of the oldest and most widely known sources of wonder: maps. Large detailed mappae mundi invited people in medieval Europe to vividly imagine places and possibilities they had never seen before: manticores with the head of a man, the body of a lion, and the stinging tail of a scorpion; tribes of one-eyed men who fought griffins for diamonds; and fearsome Scythian warriors who drank the blood of their enemies from their skulls. As outlandish as these maps and the stories that went with them sound to us today, Henderson argues that our views of the world today are sometimes no less incomplete or misleading. Scientists are only beginning to map the human brain, for example, revealing it as vastly more complex than any computer we can conceive. Our current understanding of physical reality is woefully incomplete. [This book] explores these and other realms of the wonderful, in different times and cultures and in the present day, taking readers from Aboriginal Australian landscapes to sacred sites in Great Britain, all the while keeping in sight questions such as the cognitive basis of wonder and the relationship between wonder, science, and the arts. Beautifully illustrated and written with wit and moral complexity, this sequel to The Book of Barely Imagined Beings is a fascinating account of the power of wonder and an unforgettable meditation on its importance to our future."--Amazon.com.

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"What a thrillingly uplifting antidote Henderson has created to these grim and gloomy times! To be reminded of all the wonder in the world is a marvelous gift, all the more so because it is so Read more...

 
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