Sign up for our Email Newsletter Berghahn Books Logo

berghahn New York · Oxford

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Instagram
Conceptualizing the World: An Exploration across Disciplines

View Table of Contents

Volume 4

Time and the World: Interdisciplinary Studies in Cultural Transformations

See Related
History Journals

Email Newsletters

Sign up for our email newsletters to get customized updates on new Berghahn publications.

Click here to select your preferences

Conceptualizing the World

An Exploration across Disciplines

Edited by Helge Jordheim and Erling Sandmo

408 pages, 20 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-036-2 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (December 2018)

eISBN 978-1-78920-037-9 eBook

Hb View cartYour country: United States - Click here to remove geolocation   Buy the eBook! $39.95 Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


“A fascinating journey at large, travelling over the concepts and representations of ‘the world’, across languages and cultures, discourses and disciplines, media and materialities.” • International Journal for the Semiotics of Law

“This is a thought-provoking collection of essays that deals with a question of interest to scholars across the humanities. It is enriched by the broad range of approaches and topics present in each essay.” • Sara-Louise Cooper, University of Kent

Conceptualizing the World is a fantastic, original cornucopia of valuable insights into how humans have thought about and experienced the world across history.” • Ingjerd Hoëm, University of Oslo


What is—and what was—“the world”? Though often treated as interchangeable with the ongoing and inexorable progress of globalization, concepts of “world,” “globe,” or “earth” instead suggest something limited and absolute. This innovative and interdisciplinary volume concerns itself with this central paradox: that the complex, heterogeneous, and purportedly transhistorical dynamics of globalization have given rise to the idea and reality of a finite—and thus vulnerable—world. Through studies of illuminating historical moments that range from antiquity to the era of Google Earth, each contribution helps to trace the emergence of the world in multitudinous representations, practices, and human experiences.

Helge Jordheim is a Professor of Cultural History at the University of Oslo. His latest book is a global history of the concepts of civility and civilization, written with an international team of scholars (Civilizing Emotions, 2015). At present he is writing a book on the cultural history of time in the eighteenth century.

Erling Sandmo is Professor of History at the University of Oslo and the director of the National Library of Norway's Center for Historical Cartography. His most recent books are Monstrous: Sea Monsters in Maps and Literature, 1491-1895 (2017) and the co-edited Circulation of Knowledge: Explorations in the History of Knowledge (2018). He is currently working on a book on Olaus Magnus.

Subject: History (General) Cultural Studies (General) Anthropology (General)


List of Illustrations

Introduction: The World as Concept and Object of Knowledge
Helge Jordheim and Erling Sandmo


Chapter 1. “World”: An Exploration of the Relationship between Conceptual History and Etymology
Ivo Spira

Chapter 2. A Multiverse of Knowledge: The Epistemology and Hermeneutics of the ʿālam in Medieval Islamic Thought
Nora S. Eggen

Chapter 3. Globalization of Human Conscience: A Modern Muslim Case
Oddbjørn Leirvik

Chapter 4. Creating World through Concept Learning
Claudia Lenz

Chapter 5. Between Metaphor and Geopolitics: The History of the Concept the Third World
Erik Tängerstad

Chapter 6. On the Dialectics of Ecological World Concepts
Falko Schmieder


Chapter 7. The Emergence of International Law and the Opening of World Order: Hugo Grotius Reconsidered
Chenxi Tang

Chapter 8. “Natural Capital,” “Human Capital,” “Social Capital”: It’s All Capital Now
Desmond McNeill

Chapter 9. The Worlds in Human Rights: Images or Mirages?
Malcolm Langford

Chapter 10. Democracy of the “New World”: The Great Binding Law of Peace and the Political System of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy
Lars Kirkhusmo Pharo

Chapter 11. The Immanent World: Responsibility and Spatial Justice
Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos

Chapter 12. From Critical to Partisan Dictionaries; or, What Is Excluded from Today’s Flat World Orthodoxies?
Sanja Perovic


Chapter 13. At Home or Away: On Nostalgia, Exile, and Cosmopolitanism
Olivier Remaud

Chapter 14. Extensions of World Heritage: The Globe, the List, and the Limes
Stefan Willer

Chapter 15. The End of the World: From the Lisbon Earthquake to the Last Days
Kyrre Kverndokk

Chapter 16. Time and Space in World Literature: Ibsen in and out of Sync
Tore Rem


Chapter 17. Middle Age of the Globe
Alfred Hiatt

Chapter 18. The Champion of the North: World Time in Olaus Magnus’s Carta Marina
Erling Sandmo

Chapter 19. The Search for Vínland and Norse Conceptions of the World
Karl G. Johansson

Chapter 20. The Cartographic Constitution of Global Politics
Jeppe Strandsbjerg

Chapter 21. The Individual and the “Intellectual Globe”: Francis Bacon, John Locke, and Vannevar Bush
Richard Yeo


Chapter 22. The World as Sphere: Conceptualizing with Sloterdijk
Kari van Dijk

Chapter 23. The Fontenellian Moment: Revisiting Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Worlds
Helge Jordheim

Chapter 24. Fixating the Poles: Science, Fiction, and Photography at the Ends of the World
Siv Frøydis Berg

Chapter 25. The Norwegian Who Became a Globe: Mediation and Temporality in Roald Amundsen’s 1911 South Pole Conquest
Espen Ytreberg


Back to Top