Category: Sociology & Demography, Art
Terra Incognita: An Online Exhibition This exhibit features early printed accounts of exploration and cultural encounters between what is known as the Old World or Europe and the New World or the Americas. The people on both sides of these encounters viewed the people they met through the screen of their culture and how they perceived the world, including their myths, legends, and religious beliefs. Both sides often had to reconfigure and rebuild their idea of the world with this new knowledge. The results yielded much knowledge and discovery but also misunderstanding, fear and violent attempts to control various groups.
In recent years, scholars in many disciplines have recognized that the literally thousands of engravings, wood blocks, and etchings in emblem books constitute an unparalleled source not only for the study of daily life of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries but also for extraordinary insights into what the intellectuals of the times viewed as a necessary adjunct to heraldry, social life, politics, philosophy, and moral behavior. The English emblem books scanned for this project are cultural artifacts frequently used in the analysis of reading practices, printing history, Elizabethan popular culture, the use of allegory, and the relationship of word to image.