Russian Lapland is rarely heard of today but after World War I it was briefly at the centre of the ideological divide as the Bolsheviks brought land clearances, slave labour and the suppression of the indigenous Lapps. Travelling across tundra and taiga, through wetlands and forests, and in all seasons, Roger Took found a pristine wilderness full of wildlife. He lived among Saami families struggling to retain their traditions of herding and hunting, and was welcomed by pioneer villagers descended from medieval fur-traders. He describes life in the wild and isolated Soviet mining towns and the great industrial Arctic port of Murmansk, and also how he managed to uncover some of the secret lost areas, long closed to Russians and foreigners alike. As nuclear submarines rot and old industries crumble, he observes how new Russian biznes is creating wealth in its own way. The result is a series of encounters, some emotional but historically rich, some comical but dangerous, others absurd but endearing.Moving between the lines of the official histories, coping with arduous Arctic conditions, avoiding the still-vigilant security services, Roger Took presents a vivid account of a unique part of Europe.
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Roger Took is an art historian and museum curator. Before becoming involved with Russia, he held several museum posts in England and was the founding director of Artangel, the London-based contemporary arts group. An active Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, he currently spends much of the year in the field with a Russian research team of archaeologists and historians. He lives in London and on the west coast of Ireland.Review:
'A compelling story of adventure spent with the reindeer-herding and hunting community that exists on the fringes of the modern world' -- Daily Express, BOOK OF THE WEEK 20030201 'Like most visitors to Russia, Roger Took finds warmth, humour and generosity. He gives an entertaining account of his experiences in a region that remains, despite salmon, apatite and the Northern Fleet, one of the uttermost parts of the earth' -- Independent on Sunday 20030302 'Pure adventure ... A fascinating and convincing picture of one of the most inhospitable and inaccessible corners of the world' -- TLS 20030509 'An absorbing and almost encyclopaedic account of northern travels ... Out of Roger Took's story emerges the beauty of the land, the well-observed character and comedy of the people, the smells of food and smoky tents' -- Trevor Fishlock, Daily Telegraph 20030222 'Gripping ... Full of information about historical sideshows, the book also charts the changes that have taken place in the last decade. It presents a picture of an utterly unfamiliar corner of the last Russian empire -- remote, troubled and run-down' -- Justin Cartwright, Sunday Telegraph 20030222 'Enthralling ! as we ride with Roger, wrapped in deerskins, though a frosty forest, on a reindeer sledge' -- Wanderlust 20030222 'Roger Took has style, and his elegantly written and sometimes nicely self-depracating prose makes his book quite exceptional in recent travel writing on Russia' -- East-West Review 20030222 'One of those rare, remarkable books that leave the reader with a vivid sense of a part of world he is unlikely to visit ! Took's curiosity and gently self-depreciating style make him the perfect guide to this fascinating land' -- Mail on Sunday 20040201 'What a superb Reindeer book! It's now tempting me to read not only at bed-time, when reading for fun is allowed, but at intervals during the day when I should be writing.' -- Dervla Murphy 20040201 'Fascinating ... a remarkable image of this little-known region' -- Sunday Times 20040912
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Descripción John Murray Publishers Ltd, 2004. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería M0719557399