Less tangible than melting polar glaciers or the changing social conditions in northern societies, the modern Arctic represented in writings, visual images and films has to a large extent been neglected in scholarship and policy-making. However, the modern Arctic is a not only a natural environment dramatically impacted by human activities. It is also an incongruous amalgamation of exoticized indigenous tradition and a mundane everyday. The chapters in this volume examine the modern Arctic from all these perspectives. They demonstrate to what extent the processes of modernization have changed the discursive signification of the Arctic. They also investigate the extent to which the traditions of heroic Arctic images - whether these traditions are affirmed, contested or repudiated - have continued to shape, influence and inform modern discourses. Sometimes the Arctic is seen as synonymous with modernity itself. Sometimes it appears as a utopian space signalling a different future. However, it still often represents the continued survival within modernity of the past as nostalgia, longing, dream and myth.