Fridtjof Nansen (d. May 13, 1930)

Share

Fridtjof Nansen

Fridtjof Nansen, father of Odd Nansen, polar explorer, statesman, humanitarian, died eighty-eight years ago today, age 68.  I have written previously about Fridtjof Nansen (here).  I also recently wrote about my forthcoming lecture at the 23rd annual Raoul Wallenberg memorial dinner at the Nordic Museum in Seattle on June 7 (here).

In preparing for my talk, I have been studying up on Wallenberg’s life.  Recently, while reading Alex Kershaw’s account of Wallenberg’s actions, The Envoy: The Epic Rescue of the Last Jews of Europe in the Desperate Closing Months of World War II, I came across this passage:

“According to [Wallenberg’s half-sister] Nina, he had two main heroes as a young man: Elsa Brandstrom and Fridtjof Nansen, whose acts of courage during World War I had left a lasting impression.  Brandstrom had been a courageous, self-taught nurse who had helped save thousands of lives in Siberia in 1915.  Nansen was a polar explorer, but he also worked for the League of Nations, returning half a million refugees from Germany and Austria-Hungary to their countries after the conflict.”

In my Introduction to Odd Nansen’s diary I mention that Fridtjof Nansen often quoted Henrik Ibsen (one of his favorite writers) to the effect that “man is strongest who stands most alone.”

Certainly Odd Nansen and Raoul Wallenberg took that advice to heart.  Following in Fridtjof’s footsteps, and following his advice, they both stood very much alone, against Nazi injustice, and showed how even one person can make a positive difference, and change the world for the better.

Quite a legacy, don’t you think?

Subscribe to My Blog

Get an email notice when a new blog post is published.

Upcoming Events

Share

Book Signings

  • January 23, 2020: Shalom Club/Carolina Preserve, Cary, NC
  • January 30, 2020: Kiawah World Lecture Series, Kiawah Island, SC
  • January 31, 2020: Osher Life Long Learning, Furman University, Greenville, SC
  • February 25, 2020: Osher Life Long Learning, Duke University, Durham, NC
  • March 25, 2020: Illinois Holocaust Museum, Skokie, IL
  • April 26, 2020: Chicago Sinai Congregation, Chicago, IL
  • April 27, 2020: Shorewood Glen, Shorewood, IL
  • April 28, 2020: Admiral on the Lake, Chicago, IL
  • May 7, 2020: Notre Dame H.S. Alumni Club of DC, Washington, DC
  • May 28, 2020: Augsburg Lutheran, Baltimore, MD
  • May 29-31, 2020: Georgetown University Bookstore, Washington, DC
  • June 2, 2020: JCC of Central New Jersey, Scotch Plains, NJ

People are talking


"Definitely one of the finest presentations I've been to at OLLI [Osher Lifelong Learning Institute].  Mr. Boyce's passion about the story is unique and his presentation and his book brought tears to the eyes of many of us there."

- attendee Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Clemson Clemson, SC

For more posts please see our archives.

Archives

On This Date

< 2018 >
April 29 - May 05
  • 29

    On this day in 1945

    All day
    Apr 29, 2018-Apr 25, 2019
    Last gassing of the Holocaust occurs at Mauthausen
  • 30

    On this day in 1945

    All day
    Apr 30, 2018-Apr 27, 2019
    Hitler commits suicide
  • 01
    No events
  • 02
    No events
  • 03
    No events
  • 04
    No events
  • 05
    No events
Legend
  Previous/Upcoming Engagements
  This day in history