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The Frozen Ship
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Rating
This thought-provoking examination of the most influential and popular accounts of polar exploration--from Viking settlers and Renaissance conquerors to expeditions led by such famous explorers as Ernest Shackleton, Richard Byrd, and Roald Amundsen--emphasizes themes of endurance, greed, obsession, and self-sacrifice. With tales that have captured the popular imagination for centuries, these stories consider the life-threatening risks of polar exploration, the enduring appeal of romanticized frozen landscapes, and issues of national identity that are linked with exploration. Descriptions of indigenous communities, forgotten stories of women at the poles, Robert Falcon Scott's meticulous and macabre account of his own dying, and purely imaginary approaches to polar travel such as "Frankenstein "and "Winnie the Pooh" are also included.
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About the Author

Sarah Moss is a senior lecturer in English and American literature at the University of Kent, and has a PhD from Oxford University.

Reviews

Moss (American & English literature, Univ. of Kent, UK) presents an in-depth examination of the nonfiction literature of polar exploration (with some study of relevant poetry and children's literature as well). Part literary criticism and part historical survey, Moss's investigation of the sometimes ghoulish literary results of numerous actual Arctic and Antarctic journeys both fascinates and repels. Detailing the harrowing last moments of doomed explorers, stunning feats of endurance and survival, and even the horrible necessity of cannibalism, Moss analyzes the diaries, expedition journals, and related writings of those rare men (and a few women) either heroic or foolhardy enough to have attempted polar travel. This work is best suited to historians, literary critics, graduate students, or serious readers with previous knowledge of the polar exploration genre, as Moss's in-depth approach to literary history and criticism, her dense academic writing style, and the rather specialized subject matter will not appeal to most casual readers. Adventure fans might be better off skipping directly to one of Moss's original sources, such as Apsley Cherry-Garrard's classic The Worst Journey in the World or Fridtjof Nansen's epic Farthest North. Recommended for larger academic libraries. Ingrid Levin, Florida Atlantic Univ. Libs., Jupiter Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

"A rich and frequently startling work of literary scholarship...filled with fascinating material." --John Geiger, author, "Frozen In Time" "A marvelous book, a story about stories whose meanings are wonderfully rendered by Sarah Moss." --J. Edward Chamberlin, author, "Horse: How the Horse Has Shaped Civilizations" "A compelling account of the hold which polar exploration has had over the imagination." --Kate Flint, author, "The Victorians and the Visual Imagination" "In bone-chilling detail, Moss navigates through the shifting floes...of polar exploration with a fascination for myth and meaning." --Laney Salisbury, coauthor, "The Cruelest Miles"

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