I just stumbled upon this hilarious Animaniacs song in which all the countries of the world are being listed. It’s not exactly up to date though („and germany now one piece“[0:36]).
The next one – again Animaniacs – teaches us all the states of the US, including their capitols, and additional regional information („Elvis used to hang out a lot in Nashville, Tennessee“[0:56]).
Of course the Sesame Street produced a map song too. Here we learn something about the navigational function of a map. Sorry for the crappy quality of the video, it was the only version I could find.
Here is another scene of Sesame Street – no song this time. Grover gets very enthusiastic about South America.
What wee can learn from these videos is not only how maps function as a tool to teach and thereby reproduce geographical knowledge and social order (who would ever doubt the global system of nation states after learning Yakko’s wonderful song by heart?). Furthermore these clips demonstrate how maps are being perceived as mirrors of reality: I show you a map of a place and you can see what is there (the Animaniac-songs). You search something on a map, you navigate there and – pop – it shoots out of the ground, just as the map had predicted (Sesame Street Map Song). And if reality dares to contradict the map, we often tend to blame not the map, but the actual place (e.g. „the bus stop has to be here, look at the map!“) This confusion of maps and the ‚real‘ world is wonderfully criticized at the end of the last video, when Gover sais: „Do not feel bad sir [for missing the plane to South America]. You can still look at the map“
If anyone knows similar videos, please share the link!