Cartographic characteristics of current Christian pilgrimage maps of the Holy Land

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This article investigates some aspects of the cartography of current Christian pilgrimage maps of the Holy Land, using the research method of cartographic content analysis. It was found that uniform characteristics occur in the cartographic representations of Christian pilgrimage to the Holy Land. The maps are designed to convey a Christian-religious message, are politically and religiously biased, and lead to misinformation and misinterpretation. Another conclusion is that a complex continuum can be derived in which the features that characterize the maps - secularism and tourism as opposed to devoutness, holiness and pilgrimage - can be rated. This is important because it allows us to classify and to analyze the maps for practical purposes on the basis of their position on the continuum. Pilgrimage maps were found to have a special cartographic status because of their subjective nature and their attempt to combine a contemporary reality with a tradition of maps of the ancient Holy Land. After the recognition of the biases in the maps, they should be examined for their practical implications: the influence of the different messages on Israel's ability to attract various groups of pilgrims.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-54
Number of pages10
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth-Surface Processes


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