Kon-tiki: The Spirit of Adventure. 

Putting your money where your mouth is perhaps the greatest way to change the indifference of cultural norms. Norwegian Captain Thor Heyerdahl did just this when he decided to sail from the Polynesian  islands to South America. The only resource that he had was a raft designed with primitive materials to prove that it was possible for such a ship to brong people to South America from long distance. He crafted his own raft out of balsa wood with the help of a small crew and embarked on the journey to prove his theory. He was taking a dangerous risk with this primitive raft which quickly caught the world’s attention. When months later the raft landed, a global audience celebrated the achievement of captian Thor and his theory instantly gained merit. This achievement is why I choose the Kon-Tiki raft that I saw in Oslo as my cultural artifact. I strongly admire the willingness of Captain Thor to believe in his ideas enough to expend the energy and assume the risk to prove it. I believe that risk takers do the most to change assumptions and norms because they are willing to try something that normal people will not. I believe that this free-spirited nature is something that many Norwiegans posses, something that I learned from talking to Nikolai, a friend of Dr. Whitworth. Nikolai told me about his love exploring the out ldoors and of how many Norwegians are apt to use their vactaion days exploring or enjoying the wilderness. I really related to this emphasis on individual risk taking and bold execution, and it was perhaps one of the most admirable traits that seemed to be weaved through much of Norweigan culture!


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