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The Spectral Arctic

McCorristine, Shane; (2018) The Spectral Arctic. [Book]. UCL Press: London, UK. Green open access

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Visitors to the Arctic enter places that have been traditionally imagined as otherworldly. This strangeness fascinated audiences in nineteenth-century Britain when the idea of the heroic explorer voyaging through unmapped zones reached its zenith. The Spectral Arctic re-thinks our understanding of Arctic exploration by paying attention to the importance of dreams and ghosts in the quest for the Northwest Passage. The narratives of Arctic exploration that we are all familiar with today are just the tip of the iceberg: they disguise a great mass of mysterious and dimly lit stories beneath the surface. In contrast to oft-told tales of heroism and disaster, this book reveals the hidden stories of dreaming and haunted explorers, of frozen mummies, of rescue balloons, visits to Inuit shamans, and of the entranced female clairvoyants who travelled to the Arctic in search of John Franklin’s lost expedition. Through new readings of archival documents, exploration narratives, and fictional texts, these spectral stories reflect the complex ways that men and women actually thought about the far North in the past. This revisionist historical account allows us to make sense of current cultural and political concerns in the Canadian Arctic about the location of Franklin’s ships.

Type: Book
Title: The Spectral Arctic
ISBN-13: 9781787352452
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.14324/111.9781787352452
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.14324/111.9781787352452
Language: English
Additional information: Text © Shane McCorristine, 2018 Images © Copyright holders named in captions, 2018 This book is published under a Creative Commons Attribution Non- commercial Non- derivative 4.0 International license (CC BY- NC- ND 4.0). This license allows you to share, copy, distribute and transmit the work for personal and non- commercial use providing author and publisher attribution is clearly stated. Attribution should include the following information: McCorristine, S. 2018. The Spectral Arctic: A History of Dreams and Ghosts in Polar Exploration. London: UCL Press. DOI: https:// doi.org/ 10.14324/ 111.9781787352452 Further details about Creative Commons licenses are available at http:// creativecommons.org/ licenses/
Keywords: Arctic exploration, Spectral Arctic, Dreams, Ghosts
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10047485
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