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Arctic Dreams #2020

Arctic Dreams Barry Lopez s National Book Award winning classic study of the Far North is widely considered his masterpiece Lopez offers a thorough examination of this obscure world its terrain its wildlife its h

  • Title: Arctic Dreams
  • Author: Barry López
  • ISBN: 9780375727481
  • Page: 384
  • Format: Paperback
  • Arctic Dreams By Barry López, Barry Lopez s National Book Award winning classic study of the Far North is widely considered his masterpiece.Lopez offers a thorough examination of this obscure world its terrain, its wildlife, its history of Eskimo natives and intrepid explorers who have arrived on their icy shores But what turns this marvelous work of natural history into a breathtaking study of profouBarry Lopez s National Book Award winning classic study of the Far North is widely considered his masterpiece.Lopez offers a thorough examination of this obscure world its terrain, its wildlife, its history of Eskimo natives and intrepid explorers who have arrived on their icy shores But what turns this marvelous work of natural history into a breathtaking study of profound originality is his unique meditation on how the landscape can shape our imagination, desires, and dreams Its prose as hauntingly pure as the land it describes, Arctic Dreams is nothing less than an indelible classic of modern literature.

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      Published :2020-05-12T12:58:48+00:00

    1 thought on “Arctic Dreams

    1. Whatever evaluation we finally make of a stretch of land , we will find it inadequate The land retains an identity of its own, still deeper and subtle than we can know Our obligation toward it then becomes simple to approach with an uncalculating mind, with an attitude of regard To try to sense the range and variety of its expression its weather and colors and animals To intend from the beginning to preserve some of the mystery within it as a kind of wisdom to be experienced, not questioned And [...]

    2. If I could give six stars or a 5 I would That s how special this book is It is a difficult one to do justice because it is so many things and all of them wondrous It is beautiful, rhapsodist and hugely sympathetic yet not sentimental At its heart it is a celebration of the profusion of life, all manners of life, and it succeeds on every page Crucially, it is also a meditation on the very concept of landscape and how we view it, explain it and relate to it Lopez does not deal in superficial so th [...]

    3. I stumbled on this in 2005, in a little bookstore in Heidelberg specializing in used English language books I was just trying to refill my reading material for my trip with something at least marginally interesting, but this turned out to be one of the most stunningly gorgeous books I ve ever read Lopez manages to not only see the hidden beauty of the seemingly barren Arctic landscape, but capture and convey its glory through his prose.

    4. The Arctic has captivated people for centuries, it has held the promise of wealth, is a place of unspoilt beauty whilst being one of the toughest places to survive in It has drawn explorers and writers, adventurers and artists who use the landscape for inspiration But it is an incredibly harsh environment it takes no prisoners.The celestial light on an arctic cuspThis hostile landscape is a place that Lopez has returned to time and time again to discover the people and animals that navigate and [...]

    5. If you ve never read any of Barry Lopez work, here s a quick inaccurate description He writes about the visible world with the mind of a scientist and the heart of a poet His descriptions of the arctic, its geography, animals, people is so precise that it reaches beyond physical to that invisible realm that exists between the world and our emotional and spiritual prehension of it Read his chapter on narwhals, for example, those unicorn like whales that seem to have come out a fairy tale and you [...]

    6. I read this book about 15 years ago and did not like it Luckily, Mr Lopez was leading a session at a conference I was attending, so I picked it up again This time I loved the book what changed It must be me since the book is the same edition I was impressed by many things I especially liked his discussions of the land and how different peoples describe and view the land differently He discusses maps as an organization of the land according to a certain sense of space and an evaluation of what is [...]

    7. The Arctic We think of it as a location It s an inconsequential cap perched on the crown of the familiar Mercator projection of the world It s a glacial mass anchored in a frigid sea It s a circular expanse with the magnetic north pole at it s center It s the area above 66 33 N the Arctic Circle As Lopez points out, the magnetic pole is slowly drifting and there are areas in Scandinavia lying north of the Arctic Circle inhabited by at least one species of lizard and of snake, thanks to the ameli [...]

    8. It is easy to underestimate the power of a long term association with the land, not just with a specific spot but with the span of it in memory and imagination, how it fills, for example, one s dreams 279.Reading Arctic Dreams, I was filled with longing, hope, no small measure of despair at the technological entanglements of modern life While one might come to this book underestimating or failing to consider the power of a long term association with the land, it is impossible to finish reading w [...]

    9. A reader could be prone to chills on a sunny March day as spring breaks through, and still be mesmerized by the love Lopez clearly has for a land that routinely has temperatures double digits below zero centigrade His love of the landscape s mysterious, often impenetrable serenity, is filled with mirages and challenges for daily survival that suspend a reader s usual perceptions like a good science fiction Slyly, he invites the reader to imagine the polar solstices, learn about the elegant polar [...]

    10. A thorough examination of the Canadian arctic s wildlife, people, landscape and history Probably a must read for the arctic obsessed Lopez s writing is outstanding and thoughtful The arctic is mesmerizing, amazing, and beautiful, but a thoroughly brutal place The landscape is hospitable only to the supremely well adapted, but even then will turn on animal or human populations in a way that better climates won t A stretch of bad days in temperate climates will inconvenience you in the arctic they [...]

    11. Stunning a real 5 for me The writing is lyrical a meditation on the Arctic its animals, its ways and the humans who have interacted with it since the early explorers and also the Eskimos The chapter on the polar bear and the musk oxen were fantastic I learned a lot about these animals I did not know This book captures how the Arctic captures the imagination, dreams, and desires of humans Shows the Arctic is so much than a frigid desert in fact its not barren in any way its filled with all sorts [...]

    12. Interesting, but unsatisfying Part of which is me part the book.I ve known about this book for years and years, but never got around to it If I had read it when I was 12 or 13, I think I would have considered it one of the best books ever and really sunk into it I would have been captivated by how smart L pez seems and tried to memorize so many of the facts he presents, and the stories Now, not so much.For all that the book is about connecting to the land, and its intimacies, L pez has a very Ol [...]

    13. If we are to devise an enlightened plan for human activity in the Arctic, we need a particularized understanding of the land itself not a refined mathematical knowledge but a deeper understanding of its nature, as if it were, itself, another sort of civilization we had to reach some agreement with I would be very pleased if I could give this book six stars Can you make that happen for me Because this book is just too good, too exquisite, too perfect.I realize I write the worst reviews for book [...]

    14. Originally published in 1986, Arctic Dreams is a collection of essays about the northernmost part of the earth, with an examination of the land, wildlife, peoples and history of the Arctic It was also a National Book Award winner, so what s not to love Well, I didn t love it I was looking to travel through the book to the North Pole, observing the wonders of the natural world there I was happy to receive historical background on Arctic exploration, and a scientific look at the environment But th [...]

    15. 3.5 stars.Lopez is an excellent memoir writer, but not the greatest non fiction writer, so although I enjoyed the wide reaching topics covered here, I can t bring myself to round the 3.5 stars up to 4.This is a lengthy study of the Arctic, with chapters covering specific wildlife, the history of the exploration of the region, weather and ice phenomena, and some of the general scholarly research that has been done on the Arctic It s an intense read, sometimes because of the sheer amount of info p [...]

    16. This was a fascinating look at all aspects that make up the Arctic region L pez shows such deep respect for the people and their culture, the wildlife, and the land itself as he writes in great detail about each He describes the science of different types of ice formations, the mesmerizing play of lighting, and the migratory patterns of the animals that spend time here One might think this would make for tedious reading but the topic is so interesting and the prose so exquisite that you re carri [...]

    17. Eskimos do not maintain this intimacy with nature without paying a certain price When I have thought about the ways in which they differ from people in my own culture, I have realized that they are afraid than we are On a day to day basis, they have fear Not of being dumped into cold water from an umiak, not a debilitating fear They are afraid because they accept fully what is violent and tragic in nature It is a fear tied to their knowledge that sudden, cataclysmic events are as much a part o [...]

    18. I m adding this book to my list of favorites This is an amazing exploration of every aspect of a landscape that I previously had no interest in and now I m completely captivated Besides making me think the muskox is one of the most amazing animals on the planet, Lopez also made me ponder some deeply philosophical questions regarding the nature of happiness and beauty, and my connection with place and my landscape It s a long and dense book, but well worth the read.

    19. 3 stars for the slow parts to slog through, a solid 4 for the rest.Highlights for me were the chapters on the polar bear, the narwhal, Ice and Light and A Northern Passage There is pretty much no aspect of the Arctic or of life that Lopez does not touch on A thought provoking read that s very easy to lose yourself in.

    20. I tend to feel elated when finishing a book by Barry Lopez His ardor for landscapes and the vocabulary that flows out of this affection evokes something peaceful in my spirit.The Arctic deserved a good look and telling by someone who could meditate on it with equal parts scientific rigor and a deeply spiritual orientation toward hope Lopez was that someone.

    21. I had to read this book for class, so by no means was this something I would have chosen to read on my own I loved the first few chapters when he talked about the animals but quickly grew uninterested after The writing was great and I see why people who enjoy this type of book would enjoy it, but again, it was a school assignment and I read it because I had to.

    22. Lovely writing about the arctic, mainly the Canadian archipelago About equal parts natural history, current travel vignettes, and exploration history It makes you want to go there, to see the bleak desolation, brought to life at certain times and places by great herds of caribou, packs of wolves, pods of narwhals, flocks of geese and gulls and guillemots to visit the vast geography of islands and seas with welcoming Victorian names Prince of Wales Island, Melville Sound, Devon Island all of them [...]

    23. Arctic Dreams was originally published in 1986 and won the US National Book Award for non fiction It is a compilation of around 10 essays, which can be read separately, each one focusing on a different subject, as Lopez focuses on the inhabitants, visitors and four legged, two winged migrants of a frozen territory in the North.Reading his work is a little like being mesmerised by a compelling narrator in a nature documentary, for it is not just the images of the animals and the landscape that ar [...]

    24. Where to begin Lopez covers a lot of ground here, both literally and figuratively.Through the lens of the Arctic, he urges us to consider our relationship with both the land and its native inhabitants He uses the alienness of the Far North to contrast the Eurocentric approach to the world with that of one that requires intimate and complex knowledge of, and relation to, the land for survival and growth.These ideas seem to me to be obvious we should know by now that just because a culture does no [...]

    25. As far back as I can remember, I ve had a subtle fascination with the Arctic I imagine myself wandering over endlessly white expanses of tundra and ice, a perfectly lonely permanent wanderer In my fantasy, I am somehow detached, like a ghost no need for food, rest, nor shelter, and with the ability to move quickly enough to gain a tactile sense of the land in giant swaths I ve always loved winter, and I am simply not satisfied with the winter I m getting here in Wisconsin I will go to the cold p [...]

    26. Interviewing various workers in the mines and oil fields of the arctic region, Lopez identifies a common lament They shook their heads over industrial mismanagement, that humorless, deskbound ignorance that brings people and land together in such a way that both the land and the people suffer 400 It is against just this type of ignorance that Lopez seems to be writing Lopez seems to believe that to begin know and understand the arctic is the first step toward responsible preservation a person wh [...]

    27. A classic, published in 1986, although I ve managed to not read it until now That s my loss, since Lopez s prose is astonishing, both in its scientific journalistic precision in its philosophical, ethical lyricism In fact, his musings constitute a profoundly useful ethics of respect toward value recognition of both land life in the Arctic by extrapolation, all places, species cultures on Earth One that assumes the dignity of each being within an ultimately unpossessable landscape I found Lopez s [...]

    28. I ve had this book sitting in my to read pile for nearly a year I wanted to save it for mental relief from the Las Vegas summers It was actually quite refreshing to read a book about the cold whilst temperatures outside soared cheerfully into triple digits.The writing is sublime For those who appreciate fine writing, this book will be up your alley There is something poetic and yet educational about Mr Lopez s writing style His love for the Arctic shines through.However, the book has virtually n [...]

    29. Well, everybody s reviews, and its 4.3 average rating make me pretty sure I m missing something here Maybe I just wasn t in the mood for this book right now, but it seemed to go in many random directions I thought I was going to get some good Scrabble words out of it, anyway, but iglu and aglu aren t legal.The book goes over the wildlife, then the history of the various Eskimo sic groups there, then touched on oil exploration a little, then the history of European conquest of the Arctic I kept h [...]

    30. Well I give myself a pat on the back just for finishing this one I learned a lot about the Arctic, but the prose was hard to concentrate on There was this sense of removal from the scene, like the language was actually getting in the way of the expression of the experience There is a kind of academic loftiness to Lopez s prose at odds, to my mind, with the subject However, I am glad I finally read this after toting it around with me for over 20 years.

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