A Woman in the Polar Night

Overview

For most of us, the Arctic conjures up images of freezing and forsaken solitude. Hence, Austrian painter Christiane Ritter was at best ambivalent when her husband asked her to join him on the small Arctic island of Spitsbergen in a tarpaulin-covered hut sixty miles from the nearest neighbor. Yet his descriptions were filled not with cold and hardship but tales of remarkable wildlife, alluring light shows, and treks over water and ice. Won over, Ritter joined her husband and grew to love life on this small isle ...

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Overview

For most of us, the Arctic conjures up images of freezing and forsaken solitude. Hence, Austrian painter Christiane Ritter was at best ambivalent when her husband asked her to join him on the small Arctic island of Spitsbergen in a tarpaulin-covered hut sixty miles from the nearest neighbor. Yet his descriptions were filled not with cold and hardship but tales of remarkable wildlife, alluring light shows, and treks over water and ice. Won over, Ritter joined her husband and grew to love life on this small isle off Norway's coast, and in this charming memoir she describes her experiences, with insight and wry humor. Whether or not you ever plan a trip to the Arctic, A Woman in the Polar Night offers thoughtful reflections on isolation and the place the natural world holds in the human psyche.

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Editorial Reviews

Time

"An unpretentious but arresting book about life south of nowhere."—Time

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781602231009
  • Publisher: University of Alaska Press
  • Publication date: 7/15/2010
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 1,383,259
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Christiane Ritter was an Austrian painter. She wrote A Woman in the Polar Night after her return to Austria in 1934 and the original German edition is still in print.

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Table of Contents

Introduction Lawrence Millman 1

1 The Beckoning Arctic 11

2 Outward Bound 15

3 First Days in the Wilderness 29

4 Mikkl 56

5 By Boat into the Interior 61

6 The Earth Sinks into Shadow 77

7 Alone in the Hut 86

8 Peace after the Storm 96

9 Night Falls 108

10 The Bewitching Polar Night 122

11 The Unending Darkness 135

12 The Pack Ice and the First Bear 149

13 A Dead Land 157

14 A Hunter Brings the Mail 173

15 A Trip to Reindeerland 183

16 The Fight for Vitamins 196

17 Spring on the Ice 203

18 Spoilt for Europe 213

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