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Arctic Dreams: Imagination and Desire in a Northern Landscape

by

Arctic Dreams: Imagination and Desire in a Northern Landscape Cover

 

Awards

Winner of the 1986 National Book Award.

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

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 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.

Review:

"Jubilant....Barry Lopez lavishes his discoveries into a portfolio of delights." The New York Times Book Review

Review:

"Wonderfully informed and evocative....Keen observation given shape with language that is deft and vivid." Chicago Tribune

Review:

"Rich, abundant, vigorously composed." The Boston Globe

Review:

"[It is the earth's] synchronous wealth of life — of all life — that Barry Lopez is celebrating in his jubilant new book. Among contemporary nature writers Mr. Lopez is especially a rhapsodist, and what he has done in this passionate paean to the Arctic and its cycles of light and darkness, its species of ice, its creatures and waters, is to present a whole series of raptures and riffs on the subject of musk oxen, ivory gulls, white foxes, polar bears, icebergs and sea currents....Part-rhapsody, part-history, it is a bifurcated book,and displays a magnificently nonchalant assurance at times (as when he says at one point that Eskimos are not 'errorless in the eyes of God'). As in a labor of love, he couldn't really let go of it; he has added a separate author's note, preface and prologue, and filled it with footnotes that swing among his memories and afterthoughts." New York Times Book Review

Review:

"This is one of the finest books ever written about the Far North, warmly appreciative and understanding of the natural forces that shape life in an austere landscape....Today, he contends, an imaginative, emotional approach to the Arctic is as important as a rational, scientific one. Lopez has written a wonderful, compelling defense of the Arctic wilderness." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"For Lopez, how the Arctic is comprehended will determine its fate. Whether its land, peoples, and animals are honored or vitiated will depend upon the working out of this metaphorical analogy between mind and landscape. Highly recommended for most collections." Library Journal

Synopsis:

The thirdand#160;in a four-book series on humans' relationship to nature.
and#160;

Synopsis:

The Arctic doesn't spring to mind when most people think about autumn. Yet in his continuing effort to invite readers' curiosity through unpredictability, Pete Dunne chose to pair the transitional season of autumn with this fragile environment in flux.

The book begins on Bylot Island in Nunavut, Canada, at the retreating edge of the seasonal ice sheet, then moves to Alaska, where the needs of molting geese go head to head with society's need for oil. Then on to the Barren Lands of Canada, and a search for the celebrated caribou herds that mean life and death for human and animal predators alike.

A canoe trip down the John River is filled with memories, laughter, and contemplation; a caribou hunt with a professional trapper leads to a polemic on hunting; and Pete travels to an island in the Bering Sea, off the coast of Alaska, to look for rare birds and ponder the passionate nature of competitive bird listers.

No trip to the Arctic would be complete without a trip to see polar bears, so Pete and his wife visit Churchill, Manitoba, the polar bear capital of the world. These majestic, but threatened, creatures lead Pete to think about his own life, our interactions with the natural world, and the importance of the Arctic, North America's last great wilderness.

Synopsis:

US

About the Author

Barry Lopez lives in western Oregon.

Table of Contents

Contents

and#160;and#160;Acknowledgmentsand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;ix

and#160;and#160;Note to Readersand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;xi

and#160;1.and#160;Where Seasons Meetand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;1

and#160;2.and#160;Fourth of July Paradeand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;32

and#160;3.and#160;Oil and Feathers Donand#8217;t Mixand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;44

and#160;4.and#160;The Barren Landsand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;85

and#160;5.and#160;Bob and Lisa and Linda and Peteand#8217;s

Most Excellent Trip to the Johnand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;131

and#160;6.and#160;Men Without Buntingsand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;171

and#160;7.and#160;Hunting with Heimoand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;189

and#160;8.and#160;The Polar Bearand#8217;s Picnicand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;222

and#160;and#160;Bibliographyand#8194;and#8226;and#8194;255

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

sswanso4, May 15, 2011 (view all comments by sswanso4)
Arctic Dreams by Barry Lopez enlightens readers about the history, geography and the adventure that is the northern part of the earth, the Arctic. Prior to writing this book, Lopez travelled around all the different regions of the Northern Canadian Arctic for five years as a field biologist, exploring the habitat and nature that the Arctic has to offer.
Arctic Dreams was incredibly well written. The words that Barry Lopez chose to use, makes the reading flow beautifully. Every chapter is described down to the smallest detail, allowing the reader to feel as if they were actually in the Arctic, experiencing the events that Lopez narrates. However, the book is filled with so much data and information that is seems as if one is reading a text book. If it weren’t for the author’s ability to blend words and phrases into such bliss, I would have mistaken parts of the novel to be a text book. I did, however, like that Lopez was able to mix some history into the book. It took away the feeling of reading a science text book and gave the novel more depth, allowing readers to understand the area of the Arctic better.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is even slightly interested in the Arctic and what it has to offer. It is very interesting and extremely well written; however, some parts can be a bit slow to read. Also, the book is very long and at parts seemed repetitive. All-in-all, Barry Lopez did a wonderful job of researching prior to writing the novel and did an even better job of explaining his experiences and putting them into unique words.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(3 of 5 readers found this comment helpful)
sswanso4, May 15, 2011 (view all comments by sswanso4)
Arctic Dreams by Barry Lopez enlightens readers about the history, geography and the adventure that is the northern part of the earth, the Arctic. Prior to writing this book, Lopez travelled around all the different regions of the Northern Canadian Arctic for five years as a field biologist, exploring the habitat and nature that the Arctic has to offer.
Arctic Dreams was incredibly well written. The words that Barry Lopez chose to use, makes the reading flow beautifully. Every chapter is described down to the smallest detail, allowing the reader to feel as if they were actually in the Arctic, experiencing the events that Lopez narrates. However, the book is filled with so much data and information that is seems as if one is reading a text book. If it weren’t for the author’s ability to blend words and phrases into such bliss, I would have mistaken parts of the novel to be a text book. I did, however, like that Lopez was able to mix some history into the book. It took away the feeling of reading a science text book and gave the novel more depth, allowing readers to understand the area of the Arctic better.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is even slightly interested in the Arctic and what it has to offer. It is very interesting and extremely well written; however, some parts can be a bit slow to read. Also, the book is very long and at parts seemed repetitive. All-in-all, Barry Lopez did a wonderful job of researching prior to writing the novel and did an even better job of explaining his experiences and putting them into unique words.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(2 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 2 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375727481
Author:
Lopez, Barry
Publisher:
Vintage Books USA
Author:
Lopez, Barry
Author:
Dunne, Pete
Location:
New York
Subject:
Description and travel
Subject:
Essays
Subject:
Arctic regions
Subject:
Natural history
Subject:
NATURE / Essays
Subject:
Arctic regions Discovery and exploration.
Subject:
Arctic regions Description and travel.
Subject:
Seasons
Subject:
Biology-Reference
Subject:
nature;arctic;travel;non-fiction;natural history;environment;alaska;history;science;ecology;exploration;nature writing;canada;polar;geography;biology;essays;memoir;national book award;travel writing;landscape;wilderness;20th century;ice;animals;adventure;
Edition Description:
Cloth
Series:
Vintage
Series Volume:
module A-8
Publication Date:
20011031
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
18 MAPS; 1 DIAGRAM
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
7 x 5 in 9.99 lb

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Arctic and Antarctic » General
History and Social Science » Exploration » Arctic
History and Social Science » Pacific Northwest » Literature Folklore and Memoirs
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Reference
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Featured Titles
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Natural History » General
Travel » Travel Writing » Arctic General

Arctic Dreams: Imagination and Desire in a Northern Landscape New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$16.95 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780375727481 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Jubilant....Barry Lopez lavishes his discoveries into a portfolio of delights."
"Review" by , "Wonderfully informed and evocative....Keen observation given shape with language that is deft and vivid."
"Review" by , "Rich, abundant, vigorously composed."
"Review" by , "[It is the earth's] synchronous wealth of life — of all life — that Barry Lopez is celebrating in his jubilant new book. Among contemporary nature writers Mr. Lopez is especially a rhapsodist, and what he has done in this passionate paean to the Arctic and its cycles of light and darkness, its species of ice, its creatures and waters, is to present a whole series of raptures and riffs on the subject of musk oxen, ivory gulls, white foxes, polar bears, icebergs and sea currents....Part-rhapsody, part-history, it is a bifurcated book,and displays a magnificently nonchalant assurance at times (as when he says at one point that Eskimos are not 'errorless in the eyes of God'). As in a labor of love, he couldn't really let go of it; he has added a separate author's note, preface and prologue, and filled it with footnotes that swing among his memories and afterthoughts."
"Review" by , "This is one of the finest books ever written about the Far North, warmly appreciative and understanding of the natural forces that shape life in an austere landscape....Today, he contends, an imaginative, emotional approach to the Arctic is as important as a rational, scientific one. Lopez has written a wonderful, compelling defense of the Arctic wilderness."
"Review" by , "For Lopez, how the Arctic is comprehended will determine its fate. Whether its land, peoples, and animals are honored or vitiated will depend upon the working out of this metaphorical analogy between mind and landscape. Highly recommended for most collections."
"Synopsis" by ,
The thirdand#160;in a four-book series on humans' relationship to nature.
and#160;
"Synopsis" by , The Arctic doesn't spring to mind when most people think about autumn. Yet in his continuing effort to invite readers' curiosity through unpredictability, Pete Dunne chose to pair the transitional season of autumn with this fragile environment in flux.

The book begins on Bylot Island in Nunavut, Canada, at the retreating edge of the seasonal ice sheet, then moves to Alaska, where the needs of molting geese go head to head with society's need for oil. Then on to the Barren Lands of Canada, and a search for the celebrated caribou herds that mean life and death for human and animal predators alike.

A canoe trip down the John River is filled with memories, laughter, and contemplation; a caribou hunt with a professional trapper leads to a polemic on hunting; and Pete travels to an island in the Bering Sea, off the coast of Alaska, to look for rare birds and ponder the passionate nature of competitive bird listers.

No trip to the Arctic would be complete without a trip to see polar bears, so Pete and his wife visit Churchill, Manitoba, the polar bear capital of the world. These majestic, but threatened, creatures lead Pete to think about his own life, our interactions with the natural world, and the importance of the Arctic, North America's last great wilderness.

"Synopsis" by , US
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