To the Ends of the Earth: The Truth Behind the Glory of Polar Exploration
Freelance author-historian John Dippel explores the opposite poles of the Earth by researching the sensational expeditions that so often ended in complete disaster. The underlying question with which Dippel grapples (why would so many otherwise sane men venture to the ice caps at the risk of starvation and merciless cold?) ultimately comes down to an ignoble reality. They did it for the fame and the money that accompanies international renown.
Revisiting the cycle of intrepid explorers like John Franklin, William Parry, James Ross, Elisha Kent Kane, Fridtjof Nansen, Ronald Amundsen Charles Hall, Adolphus W. Greely, Adrien de Gerlache, Robert Peary, Fredrick Cook, Ernest Shackleton, and Robert Scott, this narrative turns their explorations upside down for a rare look at the real motives behind their leaders. In virtually every case, the horrors of suffering, and sometimes cannibalism, stemmed from the deception of a fame-crazed leader. With some discoveries of old wreckage as recently as 2016, the under-belly narrative Dippel weaves plants a firm foot in the facts; however, some bone-carving descriptions might best be left to the imagination.
While Dippel examines the hidden motives of nearly-forgotten dead men, some readers may very well question his underlying motives for the graphic expose.
John V. H. Dippel