Alexander von Humboldt: The American Hemisphere and TransArea Studies


  • Ottmar Ette


Palabras clave:

Alexander von Humboldt, American Hemisphere, Identity, Travel


From the very first landing in a bounteous tropical world, European wonderment in the face of so many marvels naturally possessed a dimension that strived for knowledge and tried to conjoin a new world with old and antiquarian knowledge in a very reductionist fashion. Is Alexander von Humboldt therefore merely a new, a “second Columbus,” as he was so often described in the further course of the history of his reception? Does he simply repeat the gestures and res gestae for which the great discoverers had already set the example and in a way even predetermined? Are Humboldt and Bonpland thus caught in the trap of the perception of the other in occidental culture that enters the gray area of colonial expansion and an imperial(ist) view?