Monday, July 27, 2015

Fear of the Unknown

Ernest Shackleton amazes me in Endurance because the crew has been stuck on an ice floe for four months and Shackleton manages to keep the crew together as a homogenized team.  The team, at this point has an overwhelming fear of the unknown.  Which way will the ice floe carry them?  Will they ever reach one of the islands in open water?  Will they ever see land again?  Will the ice pack ever open so they navigate boats?  Where will their next meal come from?  Despite all of these unknowns, Shackleton managed to keep them together and put their faith in him, and, in themselves.  As luck had it, two Sea Leopards appeared and provided them large amounts of food to compensate for Shackleton's shortsightedness in not bringing additional supplies from ocean camp.  Now, as the ice pack starts to open and the crew heads for open water; they face more unknown perils at the hands of the open sea, but they still have faith in Shackleton to see them through this.  Shackleton's abilities as a leader and inherent confidence is quite impressive.



  1. I agree, Shackleton had amazing leadership ability. He was able, for the most part, to put aside his personal opinions and do what was right for the crew. For example, when the men were being placed in different tents, Shackleton put two men with him to specifically avoid having friction among the crew. His selfless actions are the reason his crew stayed with him and trusted his guidance.

  2. Shackleton's leadership was quit impressive. What really impressed me was the fact that he went back to rescue the rest of his crew members stranded at the island at the very end. Each attempt demonstrated that he would not rest assured until he knew his duties were accomplished and everyone was safe.