A new exhibition at the British Library called 'Maps and the 20th Century: Drawing the Line' features features exhibits by Dr Ben Hennig and Prof Danny Dorling.

Prof Danny Danny, Halford Mackinder Professor of Geography, is featured in the exhibition with his Social Atlas of Britain of the 1990s. Prof Dorling will also be delivering a talk entitled Another World is Inevitable: Mapping UK General Elections at the exhibition on the 28th of November.

The Population of Britain in the 1990s: a social and economic atlas on display at the British Library

The Population of Britain in the 1990s: a social and economic atlas on display at the British Library

Dr Ben Hennig stands alongside the 'Anthropocene Worlds' map which is on display at the British Library

Dr Ben Hennig stands alongside the 'Anthropocene Worlds' map which is on display at the British Library

Dr Ben Hennig, recently a Senior Research Fellow in the School, contributed his 'Anthropocene Worlds' map, now part of the British Library archive as a 2.20m wide print credited to Oxford and Reykjavík - the places where it was created. The map was also featured in a recent article on the BL website: The map of the world in the 20th century. In the article, Tom Harper writes:

"Arno Peters' map paled into insignificance against the distortion that computers could apply to the image of the world. After World War II, computers were used to compile and draw maps. Algorithms were able to calculate complex data far quicker and more accurately than humans, and turn them into visual images. The resulting 'cartograms' were able to combine spatial data with other types of data such as population figures, health, media or environmental statistics.

Benjamin Hennig's world map is one such cartogram. To somebody used to the familiar Mercator projection of the map of the world, Hennig's map is shocking in its level of distortion, with heavily populated regions of China, Japan and India appearing larger. Yet in a sense it is a highly traditional map. The shipping routes are more-or-less the same as those in the Navy League Map, and Europe retains some prominence in size, and of course, its central placement. Perhaps the most revolutionary aspect of Hennig's cartogram is that his world map provides for each and every inhabitant on Earth the same amount of space, regardless of size, status or wealth.

Whether or not that is a reflection of the real world or an aspiration will be up to future historians of cartography to decide."

The 'Anthropocene Worlds' map is on display at the British Library

The 'Anthropocene Worlds' map is on display at the British Library

The 'Anthropocene Worlds' map is on display at the British Library

The exhibition is running until the 1st of March 2017.