Критический анализ существующих подходов к созданию культурно-географических атласов
Cultural geography is a rather young and not completely institutionalized geographical science in the Russian realm. There are no cultural geographical atlases present in the state of the art, Russian classifications of thematic atlases, though one of the options includes “the atlases of culture”. A series of S.Ya. Suschiy’s atlases of the history of Russian culture and regional historical and cultural atlases may serve as some examples of atlases using the materials of cultural geography. These atlases are rarely original in terms of the means of cartographic visualizations. They are often merely historical or even hardly include any maps being only formally named as atlases while in reality looking like regional encyclopedias. The phonomena of cultural geography have received a certain development among thematic maps of complex atlases. Though the maps of cultural artifacts prevail in this case there are the traditions emerging of mapping cultural heritage and also of cultural geographical regionalization. There are such examples present in the volume “History. Culture” of the National atlas of Russia and also in some thematic products of neighboring disciplines like ethnic, ethnographic and ethnogeographic atlases. However, one can hardly witness any specific for cultural geography mapping means or approaches even in these latter cases. Mental maps could be regarded as potentially prospective trend for creating atlases specifically within cultural geography. In this regard, there is a need to overcome the existing dichotomy of mental maps like graphic means of picturing the human perceptions of their environments and traditional cartographic products focusing on mental representations. The prospect is likely to be focused on the complex cartographic decisions linking spatial representations and certain cultural landscapes.