‘Slicing the silence’, voyage to Antarctica

‘Slicing the silence’, voyage to Antarctica

“To voyage towards Antarctica,” says writer and historian Tom Griffiths in the award-winning Slicing the Silence, “is to go beyond the boundary of one's biology towards a frightening and simplifying purity.”  Your expedition ship and crew provide the basic needs of survival, and some pleasing comforts, but Griffithsalso suggests you need stories: “Stories are privileged carriers of truth. Truth ... cannot easily be stated explicitly. It is not to be found in a chronicle of facts ... Story creates an atmosphere in which truth becomes discernible as a pattern.” You’ll no doubt develop your own Antarctica stories, see your own patterns, but you’ll also do well to carry Griffith’s book with you, and to read Shackleton’s diary, or Scott’s, or any other account of Antarctic exploration and ecology, before, during or after your trip. You’ll better understand the vast continent and the people who’ve encountered it and divine and devise your own true stories for this most magical of places.

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