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Nabokov understood the seduction of maps as a way of ordering the fantastic, the disorderly, the sometimes contradictory nature of description, a visual aid to the internal eye.

For Lit Hub, Susan Daitch gives a sweeping textual overview of the ways in which different authors have used maps to enrich their work, demonstrating how they have been deployed to gain insight into both the imaginations of others and the realities at hand.

Theodora Messalas is a New York-based writer and editor who could easily be talked into going to grad school. More from this author →