Modern history

A Short History of Polar Exploration

A Short History of Polar Exploration

An absorbing history, bringing explorers' tales vividly to life.

Apsley Cherry-Garrard, one of the men who went to Antarctica with Captain Scott, said "Polar exploration is at once the cleanest and most isolated way of having a bad time that has ever been devised." Yet there has never been a shortage of volunteers willing to endure the bad times in pursuit of the glory that polar exploration sometimes brings. This compelling book tells the memorable stories of the men and women who have risked their lives by entering the white wastelands of the Arctic and the Antarctic, from the compelling tales of Scott, Shackleton, and Amundsen, to lesser known heroes such as Fridtjof Nansen and Robert Peary. This history also looks at the hold that the polar regions have often had on the imaginations of artists and writers in the last 200 years examining the paintings, films, and literature that they have inspired.


Chapter 1. The Arctic Pre-1900

Chapter 2. The Antarctic Pre-1900

Chapter 3. First to the North Pole: Arguments and Debates

Chapter 4. The Race for the South Pole

Chapter 5. The Arctic 1910–1960

Chapter 6. The Antarctic 1912–1960

Chapter 7. The Poles in the Last Fifty Years

Chapter 8. The Polar Regions in the Imagination

Polar Explorers: A Brief Biographical Dictionary

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