Scarce Limited First Edition of Gontran de Poncins' Kabloona; signed by him
de Poncins, Gontran. In collaboration with Lewis Galantiere. Illustrated by the author.$2,800.00
Item Number: 95094
New York: Reynal, Hitchcock, Inc, 1941.
First limited edition of French adventurer Gontran de Poncins’ classic account of his solo unsupported journey in the Canadian Arctic. Octavo, bound in three quarters morocco over cloth covered boards with gilt titles and tooling to the spine. One on only 550 copies, this is number 81. Boldly signed by the author on the front free endpaper, “Before I disappear for good!…I remain your friend, ‘Eskimo Miki’, de Poncins.” With the original Publisher’s Note laid in which explains, “The Vicomte Gontran de Poncins, author of KABLOONA, called out of the Arctic to join the colors of his country, disappeared in the debacle of the French Republic following the fall of Paris. It has therefore been impossible to obtain his signature for this limited edition.” Poncins did in fact survive, and this is one of the scarce copies that he signed.
Written in collaboration with Lewis Galantiere, Gontran de Poncins' Kabloona recounts the French aristocrat's solo unsupported journey in the Canadian Arctic, where he lived with the Inuit for nearly 15 months between 1938 and 1939. Bored with the business world, curiosity drew de Poncins to exotic areas throughout the world; his unique technique in relaying his observations of the cultures he discovered was not scientific, but provided stylized personal points of view and descriptions. Initially describing the Inuit way of life as primitive and inferior, de Poncins soon experienced a deep spiritual awakening after undergoing weeks of hardship in the Arctic and became so well-adapted to the lifestyle he was essentially adopted by the Inuit.