Representing Spain: Cultural Image and Geographic Knowledge in National Geographic's Articles on Spain (1888-1936) Articles uri icon

publication date

  • October 2014

start page

  • 539

end page

  • 556


  • 5


  • 79

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0343-2521

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1572-9893


  • This article analyzes the vision of Spain conveyed by National Geographic Magazine (NGM) in the period from 1888 to 1936. It is part of a broader line of research into the way geographical magazines aimed at general readers shape popular geographical imaginations. The article has two main objectives. On the one hand, it examines the connections between the type of representations typically found in NGM and the cultural stereotypes that existed about Spain in the United States at the time, notions mainly rooted in the North American tradition of travel writing, as well as in US Hispanism. On the other hand, the article analyzes the image of Spain disseminated in NGM against the backdrop of the geo-historical, political, and socio-economic context of the country in this period, a particularly important analytical step given the profound differences between Spain and the US at the time. Special attention is paid to NGM's editorial style (much more close to travel journalism than to academic geography descriptions of the country), as well as to the influence of Romantic paradigm and the importance given to Spain's regional diversity in the image conveyed by the magazine.


  • popular geographies; national geographic magazine; us; spain; cultural image