David Shackleton

David Shackleton


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David Shackleton was born on 21 November 1863 at Cloughfold, Lancashire, the only surviving child of a power-loom weaver, William Shackleton, and his wife, Margaret Shackleton. He was educated at a dame-school before beginning work at the age of nine as a half-timer in a weaving shed. Shackleton became a full-time worker at the age of thirteen. (1)

Shackleton joined the Accrington Weavers' Association. In 1883 he married Sarah Broadbent, a fellow mill worker and over the next few years they had a son and a daughter. Like other leaders of the labour movement, such as Keir Hardie, Arthur Henderson, George Lansbury and Arthur J. Cook, Shackleton was active in the temperance movement. (2)

Shackleton became an active trade unionist and became full-time secretary of the Ramsbottom weavers. He held a similar position with the Darwen weavers. A member of the Liberal Party he was elected to the Darwen town council in 1894.

On 27th February 1900, representatives of all the socialist groups in Britain (the Independent Labour Party, the Social Democratic Federation and the Fabian Society, met with trade union leaders at the Congregational Memorial Hall in Farringdon Street. After a debate the 129 delegates decided to pass Hardie's motion to establish "a distinct Labour group in Parliament, who shall have their own whips, and agree upon their policy, which must embrace a readiness to cooperate with any party which for the time being may be engaged in promoting legislation in the direct interests of labour." To make this possible the Conference established a Labour Representation Committee (LRC). (3)

As Henry Pelling, the author of Origins of the Labour Party (1965) has pointed out: "The early components of the Labour Party formed a curious mixture of political idealists and hard-headed trade unionists: of convinced Socialists and loyal but disheartened Gladstonians". Shackleton definitely fell into this category and had to be reprimanded for appearing to support a Liberal candidate in an election. (4)

In the 1900 General Election fifteen LRC candidates attempted to enter the House of Commons. However, a shortage of funds made campaigning very difficult. Only two were elected, Keir Hardie, the former secretary of the Scottish Miners' Federation and Richard Bell, the general secretary of the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants. (5)

In 1902 Ughtred Kay-Shuttleworth, the Liberal MP for Clitheroe, was raised to the peerage. The LRC made it clear they intended to put forward Philip Snowden, one of the ILP leaders for the by-election. Officials of the Liberal Party, worried that a three-way fight for the seat might allow the Conservative Party to win, offered to withdraw in favour of LRC if it selected a non-socialist candidate. Ramsay MacDonald thought this was a good idea and after persuading Snowden to stand down, selected David Shackleton as its candidate. (6)

John Bruce Glasier wrote to Hardie: "We must not seem to act as if we were either disappointed at Shackleton's selection, or were disposed to allow ourselves to be reckoned outsiders. It must be our campaign as well as that of the Trade Unionists." Realising they now had no chance of winning the by-election, the Tories, decided not to oppose Shackleton and he was returned for Clitheroe without opposition. (7)

In the House of Commons he always supported the Liberal Party. According to his biographer, Kenneth D. Brown, "Shackleton... always believed that the trade unions were the most authentic and comprehensive representatives of working-class interests and that they should not be unduly constrained by the Labour Party connection. Coupled with his moderation, this attracted adverse comment from the party's socialists, of whom he was always deeply suspicious." (8) The socialists disliked Shackleton and in 1907 Ben Tillett described him along with Richard Bell as "softly feline in their purring to Ministers and their patronage… betrayers of the class that willingly supports them". (9)

Others were more complimentary: "Shackleton was returned unopposed, the older political parties showing no anxiety to combat the nominee of the new and almost unknown Movement, more particularly when he was so popular figure in the constituency. Shackleton immediately became a force in the House of Commons, his amiable suavity and quiet reasonableness, coupled with his commanding presence, proving a useful foil to the more romantic figure of Keir Hardie.... Well over six feet high, his frequent appeals for the abolition of the half-time system were always in a measure amusingly discounted by his own robust physique as an example of what a half-timer might become." (10)

At the 1906 General Election thirty-one LRC candidates, including Shackleton, did not have to face a Liberal opponent. In a large number of seats the LRC did not stand against Liberals who had a good chance against the Conservative candidate. The Liberals, led by Henry Campbell-Bannerman, won a landslide victory, winning 377 seats and a majority of 84 over all other parties. The Conservatives lost more than half their seats, including that of its leader, Arthur Balfour.

The LRC won twenty-nine seats. This included Shackleton, Ramsay MacDonald (Leicester) Keir Hardie (Merthyr Tydfil), Philip Snowden (Blackburn), Arthur Henderson (Barnard Castle), George Barnes (Glasgow Blackfriars), Will Thorne (West Ham), Fred Jowett (Bradford) and James Parker (Halifax). At a meeting on 12th February, 1906, the group of MPs decided to change from the LRC to the Labour Party. Hardie was elected chairman and MacDonald was selected to be the party's secretary. Despite providing the two leaders the party, only six of the MPs were supporters of the ILP. (11)

This success was due to the secret alliance with the Liberal Party. Of these 29 MPs only 18 were socialists. Hardie was elected chairman of the party by one vote, against Shackleton, the trade union candidate. His victory was based on recognition of his role in forming the Labour Party rather than his socialism. (12)

Some people in the party were worried about the new dominance of the trade union movement. The Clarion newspaper wrote: "There is probably not more than one place in Britain (if there is one) where we can get a Socialist into Parliament without some arrangement with Liberalism, and for such an arrangement Liberalism will demand a terribly heavy price - more than we can possibly afford." (13)

Shackleton's main focus was to reverse the Taff Vale judgment. In 1901 the Taff Vale Railway Company sued the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants for losses during a strike. As a result of the case the union was fined £23,000. Up until this time it was assumed that unions could not be sued for acts carried out by their members. This court ruling exposed trade unions to being sued every time it was involved in an industrial dispute. As a result of Shackleton's efforts the House of Commons passed the 1906 Trades Disputes Act which removed trade union liability for damage by strike action. (14)

This was seen as a great victory for the Labour Party. The historian, Ralph Miliband, has argued: "The only issue on which the Labour Party was unambiguously pledged was the legislative reversal of the Taff Vale decision of 1901, which had seriously jeopardized the unions' right to strike, but which had also been of crucial importance to the LRC, since it was this above all else which had persuaded more unions that they did indeed require independent representation in the House of Commons, and who therefore agreed to affiliate to the LRC. The Trades Dispute Act... ultimately met the Trade Unions' demands could legitimately be claimed as a success for the Parliamentary Labour Party." (15)

In 1908 Shackleton was elected President of the Trade Union Congress. He continued to be an effective member of Parliament and was praised for his stamina and imperturbability." It is claimed that he was in "constant negotiation with the government about the precise terms under which labour exchanges were set up and he did much to ensure that they did not become blackleg recruitment centres". (16)

The 1910 General Election saw 40 Labour MPs, including David Shackleton, elected to the House of Commons. Soon afterwards Winston Churchill, a member of the government, invited Shackleton to become senior labour adviser at the Home Office. The following year he was made a national health insurance commissioner. In 1916 he was appointed permanent secretary of the newly created Ministry of Labour. It was claimed that he was chosen for this task because he enjoyed the confidence of both employers and trade unionists. He retired from office in 1925.

David Shackleton died at his home in Lytham St Annes on 1st August 1938.

Despite his later attendance at Accrington Mechanics' Institute, Shackleton never improved much on his limited education. Outside family life, in which he was a strong believer, his interests lay predominantly in temperance, trade unionism, and politics. As was the case with many of his contemporaries, his concern with labour questions derived mainly from his own experience. Hard-working, plain-spoken, and pragmatic, he became the best-known of the second generation of cotton union leaders. Fifteen months after joining the Accrington Weavers' Association he became a committee member and then president in 1889. He was briefly the full-time secretary of the Ramsbottom weavers before taking a similar position with the Darwen weavers, a post he held until 1907. In 1904 Shackleton was elected to the council of the TUC and it was a measure of his popularity that, unusually, he was elected president in successive years.

The Taff Vale Judgment was given by the House of Lords in the same year, and its full import as a means of effectively crippling the Trade Unions was clearly in the minds of officials and rank and file alike. It was evident that this "judge made law" could only be rectified by legislation, and it is true to say that no single factor contributed so much to the early upbuilding of the political Labour Movement. The United Textile Factory Workers, representing practically the whole of the cotton workers of Lancashire, affiliated almost immediately, and upon the elevation of Sir U. Kaye Shuttleworth to the peerage creating a vacancy in the Clitheroe Division, the active Socialists and L.R.C. supporters in this textile constituency were anxious to adopt Philip Snowden then a rising orator in the Movement, and fresh from a vigorous by-election fight at Wakefield, where as an I.L.P. candidate he had polled 1,979 votes against 2,960 votes cast for a Conservative opponent. However, they were prevailed upon to concentrate upon the candidature of David Shackleton, of the Darwen Weavers. Shackleton, a burly, genial giant of a man, had centred his activities upon the Textile Trade Union Movement with which he was associated, and although almost unknown at the time in the larger Labour world, he was a force to be reckoned with in his own industry and in his own county. Well over six feet high, his frequent appeals for the abolition of the half-time system were always in a measure amusingly discounted by his own robust physique as an example of what a half-timer might become. Perhaps the most illuminating light that has ever been shed on David Shackleton was his own testimony to the daily perusal of the Manchester Guardian as the main source of his literary and general knowledge. Shackleton was returned unopposed, the older political parties showing no anxiety to combat the nominee of the new and almost unknown Movement, more particularly when he was so popular figure in the constituency. Shackleton immediately became a force in the House of Commons, his amiable suavity and quiet reasonableness, coupled with his commanding presence, proving a useful foil to the more romantic figure of Keir Hardie.

Early in 1901 the Taff Vale Railway Company sued the Railwaymen's Union for fantastic damages because of the action of Union men in a trade dispute. After a case, which was conducted on lines which amazed every Labour man in the country, the House of Lords gave a final decision against the Union, which was mulcted of "3,000 damages, and incurred expenses amounting to a further £19,000. Other capitalists were not slow to realize the significance of this judgment! Trade Unions were sued on the most absurd grounds; the Taff Vale decision was quoted as a precedent; and Labour lost action after action.

(1) Kenneth D. Brown, David Shackleton : Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004-2014)

(2) Martin Pugh, Speak for Britain: A New History of the Labour Party (2010) page 18

(3) Ralph Miliband, Parliamentary Socialism (1972) pages 19 and 20

(4) Henry Pelling, Origins of the Labour Party (1965) page 225

(5) Paul Adelman, The Rise of the Labour Party: 1880-1945 (1972) pages 30-31

(6) Henry Pelling, Origins of the Labour Party (1965) page 148

(7) John Bruce Glasier, letter to Keir Hardie (13th July, 1902)

(8) Kenneth D. Brown, David Shackleton : Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004-2014)

(9) Geoffrey Elton, The Life of James Ramsay MacDonald (1939) page 147

(10) Herbert Tracey, The Labour Party: Its History, Growth, Policy and Leaders - Volume I (1924) pages 124-125

(11) Martin Pugh, Speak for Britain: A New History of the Labour Party (2010) page 71

(12) Paul Adelman, The Rise of the Labour Party: 1880-1945 (1972) page 39

(13) Philip Poirier, The Advent of the Labour Party (1958) page 145

(14) Kenneth D. Brown, David Shackleton : Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004-2014)

(15) Ralph Miliband, Parliamentary Socialism (1972) page 22

(16) Kenneth D. Brown, David Shackleton : Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (2004-2014)


David Shackleton - History

The Faculty History Project documents faculty members who have been associated with the University of Michigan since 1837. Key in this effort is to celebrate the intellectual life of the University. This Faculty History Website is intended as a component of the effort to document the extraordinary academic achievements of Michigan’s faculty in building and sustaining one of the world’s great universities. It provides access to a comprehensive database of information concerning the thousands of faculty members who have served the University of Michigan.
Find out more.

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David Shackleton - History

Faculty of Arts and Sciences — Memorial Minute
June 12, 2008

At a Meeting of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences May 20, 2008, the following Minute was placed upon the records.

David Roy Shackleton Bailey was born on December 10, 1917, in Lancaster, England. He attended the Lancaster Royal Grammar School, where his father was headmaster, and in 1935 began his studies at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where he read Part I of the Classics Tripos, getting a first, with distinctions in Greek and Latin verse. Unusually, he then did Oriental Languages (Sanskrit and Pali) Part I, again getting a first. When the war came, like other brilliant classicists and linguists, he was recruited for work in Intelligence, including a stint at Bletchley Park, Bedfordshire he was mainly engaged in translating Dutch and Turkish messages.

After the war, Shackleton Bailey returned to Cambridge, first as a fellow of his old college, where he later served as bursar, and then at Jesus College. From 1948 he was University Lecturer in Tibetan. His interest in that language and subject was said to have been in part motivated by an interest in the occult rumors circulated that he taught the exiled Dalai Lama exotic forms of solitaire. In 1968 he moved to a Chair of Latin at the University of Michigan. He came to Harvard in 1976. From 1982 until his retirement in 1988, he was Pope Professor of the Latin Language and Literature. He returned to Ann Arbor, where he died on November 28, 2005.

In 1967, aged 50, Shackleton Bailey married Hilary Amis, following her divorce from the novelist Kingsley Amis. When she opened up a fish-and-chip shop in Ann Arbor called “Lucky Jim’s,” he would tend tables or work the cash register, resplendent in a white chef’s apron. He was generally unsuited to domestic life, however, and the union did not last. Martin Amis recollecting those years, captures the less positive aspects: “Shack . . . was, I always thought, the diametrical opposite of my father: a laconic, unsmiling, dumpty-shaped tightwad. I used to say to myself: Mum’s had enough of charm.” Shackleton Bailey is survived by his second wife, Kristine Zvirbulis, whom he married in 1994, after his retirement to Ann Arbor.

“Shack,” as he was generally known and addressed, was a prodigious scholar, a towering figure in the textual criticism and editing of Latin literature, and a brilliant student of Roman Republican history and society. To say that his chief contribution was in the editing of a whole range of Latin texts only begins to describe the enduring importance of his work, which amounts to some 50 volumes and more than 200 articles and reviews. In the latter years of his retirement he produced a series of new translations of Valerius Maximus, Martial, Statius and other authors for the Loeb Classical Library, the comprehensive series of translations of Greek and Latin literature, published by Harvard University Press. His final, posthumous publications became volumes 500 and 501 of the Loeb Classical Library, thereby establishing him as its most prolific author.

Alongside A. E. Housman, Shackleton Bailey is recognized as one of the greatest scholars of Latin textual criticism in the twentieth century. Such expertise comes only through a deep immersion in the literary, historical, and social traditions in which the Latin language evolved. Shack’s combination of daunting intelligence, precise learning, brilliant wit, and broad cultural sensibility are unlikely to be seen again. His own prose style is eminently quotable. These are the qualities that tied him to Housman, and, with him, to Richard Bentley in the eighteenth century. All three of them possessed the power of textual divinatio, as it has been called, the ability to emend or explain texts which, in the course of their transmission, have become corrupted or opaque.

The name of Shackleton Bailey is most closely associated with that of Cicero (106–43 BC), whose letters (in their entirety) and speeches (selectively) he edited, with translation and commentary, in ten large volumes. Scholars, students, and (through later Penguin and Loeb Classical Library translations) the general educated reader, were, and continue to be, indebted to him, particularly for his work on Cicero’s letters—our best evidence for the twilight years of the Roman republic. Cicero’s correspondence, very little of which was ever intended for the public eye, reveals much about the most important orator—and, in many ways, thinker—of the Roman world. As Achilles was fortunate to find his poet in Homer, so Cicero is lucky to have found his interpreter in Shackleton Bailey. The letters bristle with literary and other jokes with oblique references to persons, sometimes unnamed, for whom we have no other evidence with allusions to political happenings of central importance, again known primarily or only from the letter in question. Brilliant at representing the idiom of this complex Roman statesman, poet, orator, philosopher, and theorist of rhetoric, Shackleton Bailey revealed the depth of his scholarly control of all aspects of Latin and of late Republican Rome, and so gave the world a Cicero who never meant us to read his correspondence, but who is infinitely more complex, sympathetic and, ultimately, more human for our being able to do so.

But Shack was also a colorful figure, a type unlikely to make it past the first search committee interview in the current orthodoxy. An eccentric figure by most standards—his regular attire was a grey suit and colorful sneakers long before the latter became part of the academic’s uniform—but mainly in the true and joyous sense of the word: quirky, difficult, cultured in profound and complex ways, endowed with a rare and keen sense of humor now cutting, now playful, a critic of human foibles and a man whose dedication to logic, reason, judgment, and the primacy of intelligence made those in his presence careful of their thoughts and words. Contrary to the popular assumptions and the evidence of his course evaluations, he was an effective and popular teacher to those few who were prepared to be taught, in the areas in which he had things to teach. In the classroom, as in his dealings in general, his scholarly magnitude led many to mistake an intense shyness for hostility, indifference or dismissal—attitudes that, admittedly, were not absent where he felt they were deserved. He was a great lover of cats his greatest affection was for the first, the white cat Donum, to whom he dedicated the first volume of his edition of Cicero’s letters, “more intelligent than most people I have encountered,” as he once somewhat disconcertingly remarked. Anecdotes abound, and the work endures.

Respectfully submitted,
Kathleen Coleman
Zeph Stewart
Richard Tarrant
Richard Thomas, Chair


What Mysterious Illness Plagued Polar Explorer Ernest Shackleton?

Ernest Shackleton won fame in the early 20th century as an intrepid Antarctic adventurer. But on his very first trip to the frozen south, Shackleton’s fellow explorers were forced to send him home on a supply ship due to his ill health. Now, researchers say they’ve identified the culprit behind the medical struggles that plagued the explorer throughout his career.

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As Cara Murez reports for HealthDay News, Shackleton most likely suffered not from scurvy—the diagnosis he received at the time—but from beriberi, a condition the results from a deficiency of vitamin B-1, also known as thiamine. The team published its findings in the Journal of Medical Biography.

“Historians have traditionally looked at Shackleton's symptoms in isolation and speculated about their cause,” says lead author Paul Gerard Firth, an anesthesiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, in a statement. “We looked at other explorers on the expedition, as well as members of other early expeditions, and found that some had symptoms — such as breathlessness, neuropathy and effort intolerance — similar to Shackleton’s that could be attributed to beriberi.”

Shackleton managed to lead numerous physically taxing expeditions despite suffering from episodes of weakness and breathlessness.

“He was, obviously, a tremendous character, in many ways, physically very powerful,” Ian Calder, a retired anesthesiologist who previously co-authored a paper about Shackleton’s health, tells Gemma Tarlach of Atlas Obscura. “The thing that puzzled me was that he always seemed to be conking out.”

Shackleton led rescue efforts that brought all of his crew home safely after the failed Endurance expedition. (Frank Hurley / Library of Congress) Ernest Shackleton, pictured prior to 1909 (Public domain via Wikimedia Commons)

In 1901, Shackleton joined British Captain Robert Falcon Scott ’ s mission to Antarctica as third lieutenant. With Scott and Edward Wilson, a medical doctor, he traveled by sledge over the Ross Ice Shelf, only to be forced off the trip by his bout of illness.

Firth and his colleagues argue that this setback actually led to Shackleton’s later achievements. Because the British National Antarctic Expedition considered him unfit for duty after the incident, he began raising money to mount his own mission.

“On his second expedition, on the Nimrod, he set out for the South Pole and narrowly failed to get there, but that’s when he became famous,” Firth tells Atlas Obscura. “It was the thiamine deficiency that started him on his path as an independent explorer. If he hadn’t had beriberi he wouldn’t have made his own way, as a leader.”

The Nimrod expedition began in 1907. Shackleton and his group reached the high polar plateau in December 1909, claiming it for England’s Edward VII. The men came within 97 miles of the pole but decided to turn back out of fear of starvation. After a difficult three-month trek back to their base, they returned to Britain, where their achievement was celebrated and Shackleton was knighted as a national hero. His fame only grew when he returned to Antarctica on the Endurancein 1914. Though the ship got stuck on ice and was eventually destroyed, Shackleton’s leadership ensured the entire crew made it home, as Kieran Mulvaney wrote for History.com last year.

In 1922, after setting off on yet another expedition to the Antarctic, Shackleton died of a heart attack at just 47 years old.

In 1922, Shackleton died at age 47 after setting off on his fourth mission to the Antarctic. (David Stanley via Flickr under CC BY 2.0) Ernest Shackleton (center) poses alongside fellow Polar explorers Roald Amundsen (left) and Robert Edwin Peary (right) in 1913. (Nasjonalbiblioteket via Wikimedia Commons under CC BY 2.0)

Per HealthDay, Wilson, the doctor on the 1901 expedition, appears to have initially considered beriberi as a possible cause of Shackleton’s illness but eventually diagnosed him with scurvy instead. Later researchers, including Calder, suggested that he had a cardiac abnormality. The new research argues that an underlying cause of problems with the explorer’s heart and breathing was a thiamine deficiency.

“With the benefit of what we now know about nutritional diseases, we believe that beriberi-induced cardiomyopathy—a disease of the heart muscle that makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood—is the correct diagnosis for Ernest Shackleton ’ s deteriorating health,” says Firth in the statement.

Like scurvy, beriberi can be found in people who lack fresh food. In the early 20th century, it was mostly associated with the Asian tropics. (Allied soldiers detained in Japanese prisoner-of-war camps commonly suffered from beriberi according to PBS’ “American Experience,” the debilitating disease derives its name from a Singhalese phrase that translates to “I can’t, I can’t.”)

“Vitamins aren’t discovered until after the first World War, and scurvy, as it was understood in Edwardian times, was quite vaguely defined,” Edward Armston-Sheret, a geographer at Royal Holloway, University of London, who has studied Shackleton's first expedition but was not involved in the new research, tells Atlas Obscura. “If you look back through the sources, it’s not that uncommon for people to say something was scurvy though we’d now call it beriberi.”

About Livia Gershon

Livia Gershon is a freelance journalist based in New Hampshire. She has written for JSTOR Daily, the Daily Beast, the Boston Globe, HuffPost, and Vice, among others.


David Shackleton, IDS: Drilling industry shouldn’t underestimate potential for performance gains associated with data science

Growing up in the town of Chorley in Lancashire &ndash a region that was the industrial heartland of the north of England for centuries &ndash David Shackleton did not have much direct exposure to the oil and gas business in his childhood. But he did grow up with a great appreciation for the role that fossil fuels played in the history of Lancashire &ndash both in industries like cotton, a big business in the area due to its proximity to the port of Liverpool, and in the general betterment of people&rsquos quality of living, by lighting homes and streets and allowing people to do basic things like cook food.

David Shackleton, Regional Manager, Americas for Independent Data Services, played a key role in the IADC Advanced Rig Technology (ART) Committee as the group worked to modernize the IADC Daily Drilling Report. In March 2020, he represented the committee to present a paper about the new DDR Plus at the IADC/SPE International Drilling Conference, held in Galveston, Texas.

In fact, Mr Shackleton was born in Chorley because his grandfather had moved there just after World War II to take charge of the town&rsquos natural gas supply. &ldquoThe gas holder was one of the biggest landmarks in town, next to the mills,&rdquo he recalled. &ldquoWhenever I saw it, it would remind me of him and the role he played in ensuring the town had gas back in those days. People respected him for the work he did.&rdquo

While Mr Shackleton would eventually find his way to the oil and gas industry, joining Independent Data Services (IDS) in 2012, he initially decided to study physics at the University of Durham because he &ldquowanted to know how things in this universe worked.&rdquo He then earned a Post Graduate Certificate of Education from the University of Cambridge and took up a high school teaching position, seeing it as an opportunity to share his passion for physics with the next generation.

Within a few years, however, &ldquoI realized that I was encouraging all of these students to learn every day and that I should be doing that myself, as well.&rdquo

So he went back to school and earned a Master of Education from Endicott College in Massachusetts, studying things like strategic adoption of technology, leadership in international organizations and language diversity.

By 2012, Mr Shackleton found himself becoming interested in a whole new emerging area of science &ndash the science around data. He joined IDS that year, fascinated by the company&rsquos efforts at the time to try and make sense out of 15 million hours of drilling operational data that had been stored in databases going back to the 1990s.

&ldquoThe work seemed fascinating because it encompassed not only mathematics and statistics, but also data and the physics behind the drilling and completion of a well,&rdquo he said. Moreover, the job involved working with people and developing trust and relationships. &ldquoIn a way, I transferred my skills from working with kids to working with adults. Like with teaching, I saw that I could make a difference by helping people improve the way they did things.&rdquo

When IDS later determined that most of the 15 million hours of data collected previously was unusable, the company began introducing new measures to help customers collect more complete and accurate data. This included adding things like dropdown menus and fixed-type comments, which prevented users from typing in free text that would be hard to aggregate or parse. Numbers were also saved into data tables so they could be easily analyzed.

The company then began automating activity comments for the daily drilling report. &ldquoRather than requiring the worker to spend between one and three hours writing into this report,&rdquo Mr Shackleton said, numbers and other data would be auto-populated whenever possible. &ldquoSo most of the DDR became fully automated, because we found that most of the data already exists somewhere. There&rsquos no need for a worker to write out their own version of the truth.&rdquo

By 2018, Mr Shackleton&rsquos work at IDS led him to the IADC Advanced Rig Technology (ART) Committee, which was just starting to revamp the IADC DDR system to something that could be more fully digitalized and to allow much more granularity in its reporting. He ended up playing a key role in the project over the next couple of years, eventually representing the committee to present a paper on the new DDR Plus system at the 2020 IADC/SPE International Drilling Conference.

Looking to the future of the drilling industry, Mr Shackleton urges companies not to underestimate the importance of and potential opportunities associated with data science, especially if stakeholders &ndash operators, drilling contractors and service companies &ndash can find ways for better collaboration.

With the DDR Plus, for example, being able to automatically populate the activity fields using automated rig state detection can lead to applications of blockchain technologies when it comes to contracts and payments.

Benchmarking using anonymously shared data is another possibility, he believes. &ldquoThe industry is becoming totally reliant on data, and I think being able to collaborate using the data available can really help drilling contractors to become more profitable.&rdquo DC


5. Bonhomme Richard

Bonhomme Richard battling Serapis.

Few Continental Navy ships chalked up a more distinguished combat record than Bonhomme Richard. A French donation to the Patriot cause, the aging frigate set sail in 1779 under Captain John Paul Jones and proceeded to capture 16 British vessels in a matter of weeks. On September 23, it squared off against the HMS Serapis in a ferocious battle off the northeast coast of England. Brushing off an early call to surrender with the immortal words “I have not yet begun to fight,” Jones rallied his men and successfully captured Serapis after several hours of combat. Unfortunately, his victory came too late for Bonhomme Richard, which had caught fire during the exchange and taken several shots below its waterline. After spending 36 hours trying to keep it afloat, Jones and his crew reluctantly abandoned the ship and let it sink in the choppy waters of the North Sea. Its wreckage has since become the target of expeditions by everyone from British locals to professional salvage companies, the U.S. Navy and even author and adventurer Clive Cussler. A few of the teams have found wrecks matching the Bonhomme Richard’s description, but none of them has yet been positively identified as the missing ship.

FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate.


NO MA'AM

We are approaching once again the grim anniversary of Marc Lepine's murder of 14 female engineering students at Montreal's École Polytechnique. Last year, here in Ottawa, women held a candlelight vigil (men were not welcome) at the city's monument to women killed by men, at which words and tears of grief and rage at men were expressed. It is a strange ritual, an annual re-opening of a wound and an almost exultant display of anger, like Jews visiting Auschwitz to rekindle their outrage (which, to their credit, I have never heard of them doing). Such passionate public rituals are deep windows into our culture, but what they reveal does not always match what the participants believe.

In 1993 I read a library book in which were transcribed all the conversations between a popular radio talk show host (I can't remember which one) and his listeners, in the few weeks after the 'Montreal Massacre'. For me, an eager student and detective of gender culture, it made fascinating reading. Many of the callers took the feminist position that Lepine's murders were representative of general male misongyny some (mainly men) disagreed strongly with that position and insisted that he was a lone madman, representative of no one but himself. It was only after I finished the book that I realized in all the hundreds of exchanges, some basic points had been overlooked and a fundamental question had never been asked. In fact, I have never heard it asked to this day. In this article I propose to ask and to answer this question.

First, something usually overlooked. Marc Lepine wasn't trying to kill women. He was trying to kill feminists. Before he opened fire, he said to the female engineering students, "You're all feminists. I hate feminists!" And in his suicide note, Lepine wrote, "Feminists have wrecked my life." In all of the vast discussion and analysis of his motives and his circumstances, isn't it curious that no one, to my knowledge, has yet taken him seriously and looked at his life to discover why he believed it had been wrecked by feminists.

The reason, of course, is that we assume we already know. Feminists, we believe, are pursuing the equal rights of women, and insecure, patriarchal men like Lepine resent having to share their male privileges with women, hence their anger and hate. But this explanation is built on an assumption and a stereotype: let's check them out. In particular, let's now ask the basic question that was never asked in all the Montreal Massacre debate: Are there ways in which feminism is genuinely damaging, even wrecking, the lives of men?

But before I continue, I need to confess to you that I hate doing this. I, like most men of my generation, was conditioned to protect women, to see them as more delicate and fragile, more pure and valuable. I learned to see them as morally superior, above the dirty, grubbing impusles of sexual and materialistic need that I knew were part of my makeup. I didn't like that, but I could live with it because I also had areas of superiority: I was stronger and more competent in the work world, more mechanical and more rational. I couldn't have articulated these things then as I have here, but at some level I knew them, and they felt right. I knew that a good man, in an emergency, would sacrifice his life to save that of a woman, as so many men have, and that also seemed right to me. And, I confess to you, I have not yet removed this brainwashing from my soul. Despite years of awareness of my conditioning and active personal work to dismantle it, there is still a part of me that wants things to be this way, that knows no way to find redemption from my personal unworthiness except in the approving, affirming eyes of a loving woman. When I think with this part of me, I know that honour comes from having the power to abuse her, but choosing not to, and instead protecting and cherishing her.

This historical, archetypal, unhealed part of me is clear that men's and women's roles are different, and that it does not fall to me, a man, to correct women on moral issues. That is their purview, their jurisdiction. But it is bigger than that. It is not just their jurisdiction, but their right, and I am unworthy to do it, lacking their purity. And so when necessity drives me, finally, to speak out and say, "But that's not true, not right," I feel, at a deep level, ashamed. I feel I have abused women, I feel I have lost my route to redemption, I feel fundamentally unworthy. Is this why men who in desperation murder women, perhaps their wife (or ex wife) and children, frequently then turn their gun, as Marc Lepine did, on themselves? I think so.

And so I wish, as I begin my analysis of Feminism, to apologise to women for my presumption in stepping onto their turf. And yet, it is necessary, for things have gone very badly wrong. And I can deal with what it brings up for me, for that old, conditioned, patriarchal part of me is no longer all, or even most, of who I am today, and for that Feminism deserves some of the credit.

All of modern feminist analysis is built on one conceptual foundation: that men as a gender have more power than women. Not just different power, but greater power. Liberal, socialist, radical, eco - all brands of feminism share this one foundation. All the theories and policies, the institutions and accomplishments of feminism (eg. legislation on date rape, sexual harrassment, employment equity, domestic violence women's shelters and crisis lines, programs for abused women and abusive men as well as the biases in family court), all are founded on and justified by this one belief. If this belief is false, then all these activities are not correcting an existing imbalance, but rather creating or worsening one. I will argue that this foundation of feminism is false, that power between men and women is balanced and has been throughout history.

My argument hinges on violence. Consider that in prehistoric society there was a need, on occasion, for either aggressive or defensive fighting. Such needs arise naturally from the competition between tribes for resources, or for any number of more complex reasons. (The modern notion that primitive societies were peaceful and harmonious is a nostalgic fantasy: most, like the Native Americans, were warlike long before they encountered Europeans.) Given the boiological differences between men and women which lead naturally to the women being engaged in child rearing and the men in hunting (and which division of labour is also common in the animal kiingdom), this task of war would tend to fall to men. And that would result in a problem. For once men, as a gender, organize themselves as a fighting force, what is to prevent them from taking over the society, enslaving women and taking what they wish from them? As, indeed, happens to this day in military coups. But why doesn't it happen everywhere, all the time?

The answer is that nature always finds a balance. The balance in this case was provided by an honour code. In elegantly simple fashion, men held the physical power and women the moral power. Each had a power over the other, and each had something the other needed. Men had the physical power but needed the moral affirmation of women in order to achieve social status, not to mention a wife and children. Women had the moral power but needed the physical protection and perhaps also the provision of food and shelter of men. Of course, at first i imagine there were many tribes where the men enslaved the women. What must have happened is that such tribes were less effective, less efficient than those where the balance of power was invented and men and women were able to work cooperatively, and so over time evolution favoured those with an honour code restraining the force of the warrior men. And we are their descendents.

This honour code has taken many forms over time, from the ritual chivalry of the middle ages to the exaggerated puritanism of the Victorians, but it has always been (usually covertly - or at least, unknown to men) focused on and controlled by women. Its deepest root is, of course, the power that women have to grant or withhold sexual favours, and so to cut off a 'dishonourable' man from the right to progeny or a normal life. (And incidentally, this is the reason why the sexual revolution of the fifties failed to deliver us to sexual equality, but instead resulted in the rise of Feminism, which restored sexual control by women under the guise of equality ‹ but that's another article.) This honour code is deeply and fundamentally alive in men today, and it is still society's greatest defense against both individual and collective male violence. And this is where the urgency of our present situation is apparent, for Feminism has, for the first time in history, turned women from shaming individual men who are judged dishonourable, to shaming men in general and masculinity as an institution. And the very real danger in this is that if men come to perceive that there is no way for them to achieve honour, to be recognized publicly and privately as 'good' men, then they may sense that they have little to lose by taking what they want, since they have little to gain by restraining themselves. I very much fear that if we do not turn aside from our still-growing, wholesale shaming of men and the Patriarchy and all things male, that our future may contain civil violence of a degree we have never seen before.

I will not attempt to prove my thesis to you in this article. That is the task of a future book, and anyway, all the evidence needed is available to those who look for it‹not least in the pages of the issues of this magazine. And, reassuringly, more and more books are now being published, written by women, which point penetratingly and powerfully to the fallacies in the Feminist position. But let us not underestimate the power that Feminism holds. The deepest, most deadly power given to women by tribal evolution is the power to shame. It had to be powerful, because it balanced the most deadly power given to men the power to kill. That power to shame the deep souls of men is the power that Feminism is using today to silence the men who would otherwise shout its errors and lies aloud. As I confessed early in this article, it is not easy for a man to grow out of his dependence on women for his essential honour. This is deep masculine stuff: "death before dishonour" is not a trivial male cry. Men have run from trenches directly into machine gun fire rather than face their terror of shame and dishonour. But our recovery as men begins with telling the truth about ourselves and naming our oppressions. I hope that I and Everyman can help lead men forward toward real emancipation.

And I ask for the help of women in this. As you cease to identify with Feminism for the power and control it seems to give you, and begin instead to welcome and affirm the men in your lives who choose to stand their own ground and describe honestly how feminist analysis does not tell the truth about their lives, so you will create the environment in which men can more easily tell their truths. And in this way you will create greater honesty in your life between men and women. That is the direction we must go, and as swiftly as we can, if we are to lessen the tensions that are still growing between men and women, and avoid the possibility of vast civil violence that could erupt if men are shamed beyond their limits, before they have the moral strength from their own resources to restrain their tendencies towards violence. This, to my mind, is the most important message that Marc Lepine has for us. Is he, perhaps, representative of a possible future, one in which men, shamed beyond endurance by a male-hating Feminist establishment, strike out in desperation at those they judge responsible? I most earnestly hope not.


At a Meeting of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences May 20, 2008, the following Minute was placed upon the records.

David Roy Shackleton Bailey was born on December 10, 1917, in Lancaster, England. He attended the Lancaster Royal Grammar School, where his father was headmaster, and in 1935 began his studies at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where he read Part I of the Classics Tripos, getting a first, with distinctions in Greek and Latin verse. Unusually, he then did Oriental Languages (Sanskrit and Pali) Part I, again getting a first. When the war came, like other brilliant classicists and linguists, he was recruited for work in Intelligence, including a stint at Bletchley Park, Bedfordshire he was mainly engaged in translating Dutch and Turkish messages.

After the war, Shackleton Bailey returned to Cambridge, first as a fellow of his old college, where he later served as bursar, and then at Jesus College. From 1948 he was University Lecturer in Tibetan. His interest in that language and subject was said to have been in part motivated by an interest in the occult rumors circulated that he taught the exiled Dalai Lama exotic forms of solitaire. In 1968 he moved to a Chair of Latin at the University of Michigan. He came to Harvard in 1976. From 1982 until his retirement in 1988, he was Pope Professor of the Latin Language and Literature. He returned to Ann Arbor, where he died on November 28, 2005.

In 1967, aged 50, Shackleton Bailey married Hilary Amis, following her divorce from the novelist Kingsley Amis. When she opened up a fish-and-chip shop in Ann Arbor called “Lucky Jim’s,” he would tend tables or work the cash register, resplendent in a white chef’s apron. He was generally unsuited to domestic life, however, and the union did not last. Martin Amis recollecting those years, captures the less positive aspects: “Shack . . . was, I always thought, the diametrical opposite of my father: a laconic, unsmiling, dumpty-shaped tightwad. I used to say to myself: Mum’s had enough of charm.” Shackleton Bailey is survived by his second wife, Kristine Zvirbulis, whom he married in 1994, after his retirement to Ann Arbor.

“Shack,” as he was generally known and addressed, was a prodigious scholar, a towering figure in the textual criticism and editing of Latin literature, and a brilliant student of Roman Republican history and society. To say that his chief contribution was in the editing of a whole range of Latin texts only begins to describe the enduring importance of his work, which amounts to some 50 volumes and more than 200 articles and reviews. In the latter years of his retirement he produced a series of new translations of Valerius Maximus, Martial, Statius and other authors for the Loeb Classical Library, the comprehensive series of translations of Greek and Latin literature, published by Harvard University Press. His final, posthumous publications became volumes 500 and 501 of the Loeb Classical Library, thereby establishing him as its most prolific author.

Alongside A. E. Housman, Shackleton Bailey is recognized as one of the greatest scholars of Latin textual criticism in the twentieth century. Such expertise comes only through a deep immersion in the literary, historical, and social traditions in which the Latin language evolved. Shack’s combination of daunting intelligence, precise learning, brilliant wit, and broad cultural sensibility are unlikely to be seen again. His own prose style is eminently quotable. These are the qualities that tied him to Housman, and, with him, to Richard Bentley in the eighteenth century. All three of them possessed the power of textual divinatio, as it has been called, the ability to emend or explain texts which, in the course of their transmission, have become corrupted or opaque.

The name of Shackleton Bailey is most closely associated with that of Cicero (106–43 BC), whose letters (in their entirety) and speeches (selectively) he edited, with translation and commentary, in ten large volumes. Scholars, students, and (through later Penguin and Loeb Classical Library translations) the general educated reader, were, and continue to be, indebted to him, particularly for his work on Cicero’s letters—our best evidence for the twilight years of the Roman republic. Cicero’s correspondence, very little of which was ever intended for the public eye, reveals much about the most important orator—and, in many ways, thinker—of the Roman world. As Achilles was fortunate to find his poet in Homer, so Cicero is lucky to have found his interpreter in Shackleton Bailey. The letters bristle with literary and other jokes with oblique references to persons, sometimes unnamed, for whom we have no other evidence with allusions to political happenings of central importance, again known primarily or only from the letter in question. Brilliant at representing the idiom of this complex Roman statesman, poet, orator, philosopher, and theorist of rhetoric, Shackleton Bailey revealed the depth of his scholarly control of all aspects of Latin and of late Republican Rome, and so gave the world a Cicero who never meant us to read his correspondence, but who is infinitely more complex, sympathetic and, ultimately, more human for our being able to do so.

But Shack was also a colorful figure, a type unlikely to make it past the first search committee interview in the current orthodoxy. An eccentric figure by most standards—his regular attire was a grey suit and colorful sneakers long before the latter became part of the academic’s uniform—but mainly in the true and joyous sense of the word: quirky, difficult, cultured in profound and complex ways, endowed with a rare and keen sense of humor now cutting, now playful, a critic of human foibles and a man whose dedication to logic, reason, judgment, and the primacy of intelligence made those in his presence careful of their thoughts and words. Contrary to the popular assumptions and the evidence of his course evaluations, he was an effective and popular teacher to those few who were prepared to be taught, in the areas in which he had things to teach. In the classroom, as in his dealings in general, his scholarly magnitude led many to mistake an intense shyness for hostility, indifference or dismissal—attitudes that, admittedly, were not absent where he felt they were deserved. He was a great lover of cats his greatest affection was for the first, the white cat Donum, to whom he dedicated the first volume of his edition of Cicero’s letters, “more intelligent than most people I have encountered,” as he once somewhat disconcertingly remarked. Anecdotes abound, and the work endures.

Kathleen Coleman
Zeph Stewart †
Richard Tarrant
Richard Thomas, Chair


HISTORY | The Adams-class guided-missile destroyers and the Royal Australian Navy

HMAS Perth, HMAS Brisbane and HMAS Hobart alongside Stokes Hill Wharf in Darwin. Photo: DoD

From its origins in 1901 until the late 1950s, through its deep association with the Royal Navy, the Royal Australian Navy became unmistakably British in outlook, practices and culture. It was a relationship of great value to Australia. That comfortable symbiosis had reached its zenith by 1957, when Prime Minister Robert Menzies announced to parliament that Australia would be moving towards standardising Australia’s military services with those of the United States.

The outcome of that decision was that the RAN would successfully transition to be a highly valued ally of the US Navy, already the RN’s replacement as the world’s most powerful maritime force. On that journey, the RAN progressively underwent a major transformation in virtually every dimension, the catalyst for which was its operation of the Charles F. Adams–class guided-missile destroyers.

By 1957, Australia’s government had a clear-eyed view that the nation’s security was much more closely linked with America than with Britain. The Cold War had started, and the threat of communist expansion in Asia was taken seriously. Indonesia was, for a while, regarded as a threat because of its alignment with the Soviet Union.

With the impending demise of its carrier-based aircraft in the early 1960s, the RAN needed an air-defence alternative to fighter planes and decided to acquire ships fitted with surface-to-air guided missiles. The navy’s leaders wanted an extensively modified RN County class. The British beam-riding Sea Slug would be replaced with the US Navy’s semi-active homing Tartar, and the Australian-designed Ikara anti-submarine missile system would be installed. One can only guess what the technical risk, cost and schedule implications would have been.

Fortunately for Australia, that solution didn’t fit with the government’s primary objective of having elements of its navy standardised with America’s navy for the lowest possible price to demonstrate its commitment to ANZUS and SEATO. The RAN had a Hobson’s choice: take the Adams-class guided- missile destroyers or get nothing. The US sold Australia two, and then a third (after Australia asked for it), which were named HMAS Perth, Hobart and Brisbane. It was the first time the US had sold its most modern warships to another country.

Soon after arriving in Australia, Hobart joined the US 7th Fleet on combat operations in Vietnam Perth and Brisbane were also rotated in. The destroyers were manned by well-trained crews, with captains who were usually on at least their second command. They wore the RAN’s new white ensign and were unmistakably Australian – a distinction that mattered to both navies. That distinction and mutual respect, earned by a combination of high standards and skills, still underpins one of the great enduring naval associations of the modern era.

New methods of operational logistic support, weapons systems management, air defence, command and control and replenishment at sea were just some aspects of naval warfare brought back to the broader RAN from the destroyers’ experience in Vietnam. The RAN also adopted a much more intensive, multifaceted and independently assessed work-up regime in preparing its ships for deployment based on US Navy practices.

As the destroyers entered service in the mid-1960s, the US Navy was already introducing its digital combat system and had started work on what eventually became Aegis. The RAN was offered software at no charge for a scaled-down tactical data system, which became the RAN’s naval combat system. It was primarily an air-defence system and integrated with the digital Standard Missile system. Management of anti-submarine operations was analogue and clumsy, and electronic warfare integration was poor. All three ships later underwent further modernisation but retained the relatively short range and obsolescent SM1 missile system, making them vulnerable to emerging capabilities in Australia’s region.

Australia’s experience with the Adams destroyers led to the purchase of three, and later a fourth, Perry-class guided-missile frigates from the US. Two more were eventually built in Australia, the last of which has only recently been decommissioned. The RAN therefore operated nine ships of US origin with fundamentally the same combat system and weapons and benefited greatly from that standardisation.

Between 1976 to 2001, officers who had been a head of department in a destroyer had markedly better prospects for promotion to star rank. With two exceptions, in the 53 years from 1955 to 2008, the most senior leadership of the RAN was exercised by 17 officers who came from two distinct backgrounds.

First, for about 27 years, former commanding officers of aircraft carriers were ultimately chosen to become the chief of naval staff. Second, from 1982, for 26 years, the chiefs were former commanding officers of destroyers. Having such an influential group of senior officers ensured that there was a deepening and integration of knowledge acquired from the US Navy, enabling the RAN to unmistakably Australianise its methods and culture, born of its immeasurably valuable RN heritage.

The plan for extensive modernisation of Anzac frigates as replacements for the destroyers was cancelled because of technical risk and cost. This was matched by a drawn-out and expensive modernisation program for four of the RAN’s six Perry-class frigates. Those ships were equipped with the SM2 missile and anti-ship missile defence capabilities but lacked the command and control facilities necessary for modern task group operations. A planning failure meant that the destroyers were in service for at least a decade too long. When HMAS Brisbane was retired from the RAN in 2001, it took until 2017 for HMAS Hobart, the first of the Aegis-equipped Hobart class, to restore the RAN’s capability for advanced air defence and command and control.

For nearly 36 years, the destroyers gave naval options to Australia’s political decision-makers during cold war, limited war and peace. The Adams class empowered the RAN in developing a much greater understanding of what it means, and what had to be done, to become a distinctly Australian and self-reliant medium-power navy.

This article is a summary of David Shackleton’s accepted PhD thesis the full thesis is available for download from the RAN Sea Power Centre


Leading in Hard Times: Lessons from Shackleton

In 1914, Europe began WWI and set about devouring a generation of European men. Also that year, Ernest Shackleton, already a famed and knighted Antarctic explorer, headed an expedition to cross that continent. The ice trapped and then crushed his ship, the Endurance, forcing months of camping on the ice followed by a six day open boat trip. Next came a truly incredible three week ordeal as Shackleton and a crew of 5 others crossed 830 miles through hurricane and gale roiled seas in a modified life boat. Then, he and 2 others traversed the uncharted interior of South Georgia Island (a first) and its perilous combination of mountains and ice fields (32 miles in about 36 hours). Shackleton’s multiple attempts to rescue those left behind culminated in his arriving with a rescue ship four months after his departure. Reportedly, he could not bear to watch from the rescue launch as his boatmates counted the number of survivors visible and waving on shore. Everyone had survived.

I often explore the case with executives attending Wharton’s Aresty Institute of Executive Education because of its richness and the starkness of the colors of its lessons…and because as the novelist Thomas V. Pychon said, “You wait. Everyone has an Antarctic.” I even taught the case in Antarctica as part of an eight day/seven night Antarctic trek one hundred years after Shackleton’s expedition made it out. Research and cumulative leadership experiences support many of Shackleton’s practices and in these times, I offer a few up for you who lead when it matters most, like now.

  • Be honest and clear. Those in authority need to help one and all to understand reality, as best as we can possibly understand it. Truth and clarity on the part of those in charge help those not in charge to stay calm and to trust that those in charge deserve to be in charge. In Shackleton’s case, that meant the following. Icebound for nearly 300 days, their ship, the Endurance sank. In anticipation, Shackleton had ordered evacuation and the establishment of a camp on the ice. Everyone had heard and felt the crushing grip of the ice for months and especially over the preceding few weeks. The moment to abandon ship came. Gathered on the ice, the expedition listened to Shackleton. Where would his legendary optimism and tenacity lead his thinking? Would he advocate pushing on with the mission to cross the continent? Shackleton, financially invested in this expedition up to and over the crown of his head, stated simply and calmly, ‘Ship and stores gone, so now we go home.’
  • Be optimistically problem centered, action focused, other oriented, and concrete. Restated, ‘This is reality. This is what’s going to happen. Here’s what we need to do.’ Given #1 above, Ernest Shackleton kept people busy in very specific tasks such as when he overheard an expedition member wondering out loud about whether it was worth carrying on. Shackleton asked the man to make tea for the group, which he did. Shackleton then noted with pleasure that the man had next washed his socks and carefully hung them out to dry. People need to see that they remain connected to others, that their efforts still matter, and, indeed, that they themselves still matter.
  • Create routine and structure. Reinforce order amidst the unknown and chaotic. A regular schedule of group and individual check-ins along with clear goals for this week or even this day help people keep their corner of the universe tidy. It’s high stakes feng shui. Specific short term tasks also enable people to maintain a sense of their own efficacy, a sense that they can influence their environment, that they should not give in or up.
  • Anxiety up, intelligence down…including yours. Adjust to this reality and keep it simple…in order to help you and others focus. It’s not the time for grand statements. Also, keep the real enemy in clear site. Look over the gunwales as much as possible and, as Shackleton did, move toward conflict, address it, tamp it down. Likely, it will not just ‘blow over’.
  • Get out there. Restated, don’t hang around headquarters when the shooting starts. Find your unit. Walk the parapet. People want to know that they’re not cut off, that they remain connected to the organization…that they matter. Talk to people regularly as a group and as individuals. Stay in touch. The presence of members of the chain of command supports a sense of connection and of being valued. Also, that higher ranking person often can, when needed, secure resources and make bigger decisions, a reality that helps people feel that they have or can get what they need in order to overcome the times, however hard.
  • Play… regularly. Shackleton organized and encouraged both a busy routine (see #3 above) and regular play such as slide shows, phonograph sessions, theatre, and football. He saved a banjo while discarding all non-essentials for the sake of lessening weight for travel. Today, science tells us the physiological and physiological benefits of laughter and of staying in touch with the joy of living. It’s why people join to sing across rooftops and balconies around the world as the sun goes down on another trying and isolated day. You and your people should too.

What do these practices look like amidst Covid-19? Scroll through a few stories about its handling by Angela Merkel, Jacinda Ardern, Lady Gaga (in combination with IBM’s Ginni Rametty and Pepsico’s Kirk Tanner) or Captain Crozier. As for how much in the end, any of this matters consider Sir Edmund Hillary, the first European to summit Mount Everest. Hillary also fulfilled Shackleton’s hope of crossing Antarctica, doing so as part of an expedition 40 years after Shackleton’s attempt. When asked about Shackleton, Hillary leaned on a quote often attributed to another Antarctic explorer, Sir Raymond Priestly: “For scientific discovery give me Scott for speed and efficiency of travel give me Amundsen but when disaster strikes and all hope is gone, get down on your knees and pray for Shackleton.” Or, consider what type of relationship do you want with your team, not just during, but after COVID-19?


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