Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Amundsen& Nansen

Having decided to squeeze time instead of waiting, I've just started reading Despair. And found this bit:
"Somebody told me once that I looked like Amundsen, the Polar explorer. Well, Felix, too, looked like Amundsen. But it is not every person that can recall Amundsen's face. I myself recall it but faintly, nor am I sure whether there had not been some mix-up with Nansen..."
Mix-up? They don't look alike!
(or Felix resembles Hermann only as much as Amundsen resembles Nansen?)

(left: Roald Amundsen; right: Fridtjof Nansen) 

So I read the book with Hermann and Felix as Amundsen in my head. A rich Amundsen and a poor Amundsen. That comparison is repeated later. But Nansen's face keeps creeping in. That probably has to do with the fact that I'm more familiar with Nansen, having seen him everywhere, at Fram museum, at UiO, at Oslo S, probably at the Nobel Fredssenter as well, but it's unsettling nevertheless. It feels as though there's indeed a split, as Hermann has experienced.