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I may be some time : ice and the English imagination

Author: Francis Spufford
Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 1997.
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : 1st St. Martin's edView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
I May Be Some Time is a richly engrossing cultural history of the human obsession with ice, Eskimos, and polar exploration. When Captain Scott died on his way back from the South Pole, history became a myth embedded in both the public and private imagination. People still remember the last words of one of the party's doomed explorers as he stepped from the tent, never to be seen again - "I'm just going outside and I  Read more...
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Details

Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Francis Spufford
ISBN: 031217442X 9780312174422
OCLC Number: 37748395
Notes: Originally published: London ; Boston : Faber and Faber, 1996.
Description: 372 p. : ill., map ; 22 cm.
Contents: Different history for the poles --
Sublime --
News from nowhere --
Damn the North Pole! --
Powers of frost and air --
Lady Jane's lament --
Relics in the snow --
Imagining Eskimos --
Comfortable barbarians --
I have always taken my place, haven't I?
Other Titles: Ice and the English imagination
Responsibility: Francis Spufford.
More information:

Abstract:

I May Be Some Time is a richly engrossing cultural history of the human obsession with ice, Eskimos, and polar exploration. When Captain Scott died on his way back from the South Pole, history became a myth embedded in both the public and private imagination. People still remember the last words of one of the party's doomed explorers as he stepped from the tent, never to be seen again - "I'm just going outside and I may be some time." Conventional histories of polar exploration trace the laborious expeditions across the map, dwelling on the proper techniques of ice-navigation and sled-travel, but rarely has a writer asked what the explorers thought they were doing, or why they did these seemingly insane things. Francis Spufford reveals an extraordinary history of feeling buttressed by the call of vast empty spaces and the beauty of untrodden snow, as he places together the elements of a myth that still has the power to seduce. Drawing on diaries, letters, the works of Bronte, Keats, and others, I May Be Some Time is about the poles as they have been perceived, dreamed, even desired. It explores myth as myth, showing how Scott's death was the culmination of a long-running international enchantment with perilous expeditions to the ends of the earth.

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