Editorial cartoons are a form of social commentary combining text and imagery. Small in size, they must be worded succinctly and have recognizable images. By their nature, use, and placement – traditionally on the opinion and editorial page of a newspaper – editorial or political cartoons have a point to make, an agenda to press. Whether that message is subtle or blatant, editorial cartoons are designed to comment on and make people think about events and issues of local, regional, national, or global significance.

This study examined map and geographical imagery in selected editorial cartoons. The purpose was to identify image types, the reader’s range of view relative to the cartoon, geographical locations, and whether the locations were concrete or abstract. Cartoons in this study were digitized images of editorial cartoons from the 1960s and 1970s.