Milton Santos, For a New Geography, translated by Archie Davis – University of Minnesota Press, November 2021

Originally published in 1978 in Portuguese, For a New Geography is a milestone in the history of critical geography and it marked the emergence of its author, Milton Santos (1926–2001), as a major interpreter of geographical thought, a prominent Afro-Brazilian public intellectual, and one of the foremost global theorists of space.

Published in the midst of a crisis in geographical thought, For a New Geography functioned as a bridge between geography’s past and its future. In advancing his vision of a geography of action and liberation, Santos begins by turning to the roots of modern geography and its colonial legacies. Moving from a critique of the shortcomings of geography from the field’s foundations as a modern science to the outline of a new field of critical geography, he sets forth both an ontology of space and a methodology for geography. In so doing, he introduces novel theoretical categories to the analysis of space. It is, in short, both a critique of the Northern, Anglo-centric discipline from within and a systematic critique of its flaws and assumptions from outside.



Critical geography has developed in the past four decades into a heterogeneous and creative field of inquiry. Though accruing a set of theoretical touchstones in the process, it has become detached from a longer and broader history of geographical thought. For a New Geographyreconciles these divergent histories. Arriving in English at a time of renewed interest in alternative geographical traditions and the history of radical geography, it takes its place in the canonical works of critical geography.

Soil types in the Netherlands

 

Soil types in the Netherlands.

Map showing the island topography and location of Nauru in the Pacific Ocean

 

Map showing the island topography and location of Nauru in the Pacific Ocean.

Map of National Democratic Republic of Timor Leste

 

Map of National Democratic Republic of Timor Leste.

Map of the 26 Brazilian states and the Federal District of Brasilia

 

Map of the 26 Brazilian states and the Federal District of Brasilia.