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Scott, Shackleton, and Amundsen

Scott, Shackleton, and Amundsen Cover

Scott, Shackleton, and Amundsen

Ambition and Tragedy in the Antarctic

By David Thomson

Basic Books, Paperback, 9781560254225, 352pp.

Publication Date: September 30, 2002

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Description
Between the middle of January and the end of March 1912 five men died in the attempt to return from the South Pole to their base on the edge of Antarctica. Their leader, the last to die and the man whose diary described their agonies was Robert Falcon Scott. The expedition had been beaten to the Pole by a band of racing Norwegians, led by Roald Amundsen. The bodies of the last three to die were found seven months later and, ever since, Scott's men have been British heroes. It is that legend, as much as their ordeal that is the subject of this book. Scott's men and the supporting characters, Amundsen and Shackleton, his rivals; Clement Markham, his discoverer; his wife Kathleen--give a fascinating picture of English society before the First World War. The story of the drama becomes also an illustration of human and social character. And, to the extent that Scott is legendary in England, the book tells something about the English and their attitude to duty.


About the Author
David Thomson is the author of A Biographical Dictionary of Film and many other books including Showman: The Life of David O. Selznick, Rosebud: The Story of Orson Welles, and In Nevada. He lives in San Francisco.
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