Innocents on the Ice: A Memoir of Antarctic Exploration, 1957



Many books have been written about Antarctica since early explorers first ventured inland from the coast in the early 20th century. Many of them have focused on the day-today rigors of staying alive and on the effort to survive by daring explorers who ventured where no person had been before. Innocents on Ice: A Memoir of Antarctic Exploration, 1957 by John Behrendt differs slightly by dealing not only with survival and exploration, but also with the day-to-day rigors of conducting scientific work in an inhospitable environment.

Aside from the survival and the science, Behrendt's story also has a remarkable human side as he describes the battle between civilian scientists and an overbearing commanding naval officer with an unusual and controversial style of leadership. “Innocents” refers to the relative youth and inexperience of the traverse team of five young scientists who set out to explore and conduct geophysical and glaciological research in previously unexplored territory.