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Titanic-Why are we still fasinated by it 100 years on?

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Just thought I'd ask the question :?:

Is it the romance of the era :?:

The sheer feat of engineering of it's time :?:

The sheer level of disaster :?:

The dream :?:

The shortcuts which caused the mass loss of life :?:


Plenty of ships have sunk with loss of life...so what was so special about the Titanic :?:



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As far as I know it was the first peacetime ship disaster,& the Titanic was heralded as the most luxurious ship of its time,huge in size & cost,plus UNSINKABLE.

Imagine if Concorde had crashed on its first flight in the '70's....this was,& still is a massive event,not just because of the huge loss of life,but also the effect it had on the people of the time.

The stories of half full life boats & poor souls in steerage locked behind metal gates are horrifying & true...this was a disaster marred by class divides & that always will hold a place in peoples memories ,hopefully as something that should never happen again.


It is on TV a lot now because of the 100 year anniversary....it actually sank on my Husbands birthday,although he is slightly younger :lol:


Of course the Downton effect hasn't harmed the disasters reputation of late,but personally speaking it is something that always has held a morbid fascination for me.

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Wasnt bothered but YS is fascinated by it and took him to see the 3D version last week. The black and white version is on at 3pm BBC2 this pm so will watch it then with him. We are also building our own Titanic ( scaled down airfix model) in the sitting room. I was reading about omens to the disaster - the ships cat moved her kittens off the ship several days before it set sail - sailors are very superstitious apparently an one of the sailors seeing this disembarked early thus saving his life. Amazing how a childs enthusiasm rubs off on you. frankly I have no desire to go on a cruise - we went on a boat last year in Spain on a trip and I was so seasick I slept the whole journey. No dry land for me thanks.

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I think the fascination still lingers because of the impact it had on the world, in a time before mass media. Unlike say 9:11, there was no way of covering the story, no pictures, no 24 hour rolling news programme, so the world has built a story around eye witness accounts.


My grandmother used to tell us about what happened on the Titanic, stories handed down from her Great Aunt who had been a passenger on the boat, and had survived. Nothing in a film can ever match the description of utter terror, even a second hand description, felt by her and the others around her. The imagination is a powerful thing, and given a snippet of a story, you can build a picture in your mind that can capture the scene in a way a film director cannot quite manage.

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Interesting points of view :D


There have been so many 'disasters' from the devastation caused by floods, earthquakes, Tsunamis, mother nature wreaking havoc, Cher"Ooops, word censored!"yl....YET Titanic is a fascination which appears to grab everyone, even if only in a small way.


I would love to have a 'spare' £30,000 and actually go on a sub to have a look at it but I am a believer that is should remain on the ocean floor and nothing should be removed from it.


I am in awe of the craftsmanship that went into building such a magnificent vessel at that time. The dreams that people had, the sadness that wiped out & devastated whole communities.


Cost of a ticket (one way)


First Class (parlor suite) £870/$4,350 ($83,200 today)

First Class (berth) £30/$150 ($2975 today)

Second Class £12/$60 ($1200 today)

Third Class £3 to £8/$40 ($298 to $793 today)


Note: In 1912, skilled shipyard workers who built Titanic earned £2 ($10) per week. Unskilled workers earned £1 or less per week. A single First Class berth would have cost these workers 4 to 8 months wages.


Cost of the Titanic (in 1912): $7,500,000

Cost to build Titanic today: over $400,000,000


Could you imagine spending that amount of money :!::!::!:



How times change :think:

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The worlds largest passenger boat, sunk on its maiden voyage, is bound to stick in people minds. Also, after the Titanic sunk, massive changes were made in shipping safety, because at the time, the Titanic had more lifeboats than required by law.


I also found this which shows wireless messages sent from the Titanic.

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I have always hated anything to do with the Titanic; it fills me with horror/dread and always has done; got 15 mins into the film and had to leave the room. When I mentioned this to my Mum very recently she said 'Oh, must be in the genes then' and when I asked her what the doodah she was on about it seems that her Mum's cousin was aboard and died.......the first I had heard about it.


Mum said that it was always just in the background in the family but the whole Titanic thing didn't really 'take off' until the Kate Winslet film so it just wasn't mentioned. Sadly we don't know any more about this cousin as Nana died about 30 years ago and it just became part of the family story.


Still havn't been able to watch anything about the disaster on TV!

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So sorry s0apdragon, it's such a shame that you're family lost a part of it under such tragic circumstances. As others have said...it is the biggest maritime disaster of all time and it changed the law for the good.


Yes some films have 'romanticized' the event, however I don't think they take anything away from the tragedy of it. There have some some very good docudramas made which have been as factual as possible and have helped lots of people understand what happened and some to come to terms with the events of that fateful journey. :cry:

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I think part of the fascination is that a series of avoidable errors (and significant things) came together to help create the disaster.[list=]

* An unsinkable ship

* The lack of lifeboats - especially that Titanic was designed to carry many more than she did, but they were not put on because they made the deck look untidy

* The radio breaking and having to be repaired, causing a backlog of messages

* Warning messages not being passed on immediately, because they were not addressed to the Captain

* Lack of lifeboat drill, despite it being company policy to do one

* The desire to break speed records and to arrive in New York one dayahead of schedule (a fast transatlantic crossing would boost demand for passage later)

* The radioman being told to "get out" when he tried to deliver the final message about the iceberg coordinates

* Turning the corner later than normal, putting them on a collision course with the icebergs they had been warned about

* The other ship (Californian?) actually being very close, but the wireless was not manned overnight

* The other ship (Californian?) mistaking the flares for fireworks

* The orchestra playing on

* The lifeboats (bar 1) going quiet and not turning back to pick up people who had jumped into the water

* The scale of loss - especially as so many people were going to start a new life


and so on.


None of them partiularly significant on their own, but together they created a disaster.

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I think also because it was a "slow" disaster - the ship took a long time to sink so there was plenty of time for the survivors to witness the events and tell their stories afterwards (and for things to happen like the band playing on deck). If there had been no survivors there would have been no stories and equally if the ship had sunk quickly there would have been nothing much to tell.


Sadly I think that if there had been no human stories the disaster would have been largely forgotten, like the Lusitania. She sank very quickly so nothing much to tell.


It is the sad stories of the band etc which keep it going.

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It is just a very dramatic story. You've got the unsinkable ship (although it was actually described as "practically unsinkable") sinking on its maiden voyage which points to the hubris of human beings. People love to speculate about the series of mistakes, real and mythical, that contributed to the disaster, from the lookout not being able to find the binoculars to the possibility of the hull's steel being substandard. I recently heard another theory that, a few weeks earlier, the moon had passed closest to Earth in 1,400 years, resulting in abnormally high tides which caused grounded icebergs to float out into shipping lanes. The captain had no concern about icebergs because in his 30+ years of experience, he had never seen them so far south at that time of the year. Then you've got the elegance of the era and the bravery of the crew and some of the passengers, with the captain and most of the officers going down with the ship. Compare that to the recent sinking of the modern cruise liner off the coast of Italy and the captain abandoning ship before the passengers were all safe!

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Titanic does fascinate me. I think it is its sheer size, the era & all the mistakes that were made that gets me.

In the film - it is when the adults tuck the children up in bed like normal that makes me cry & the band playing on through such a disaster.

My biggest fear is sailing on the sea.

I watched the tv programme on Titanic last night (Sunday), very moving. I have yet to listen to the minute by minute account on radio 2 website.


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I work just up the road from the White Star building in Liverpool where they announced the sinking of the ship and the names of the dead from the balcony.

Does make you think back to a different age. We expect instant access to news, couldn't imagine having to stand in the street with a huge crowd waiting to find out if you were one of the lucky ones.

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I too find everything to do with the Titanic fascinating, I think peculiarly it's because of my absolute horror of being in that situation and drowning, and the thought of what would I have done, how would I have behaved. Also because of all the unlucky incidents that together led to the most beautiful and luxurious of ships sinking on a maiden voyage. My OH's great grandfather was involved with creating the beds in the First Class cabins and was offered a passage on that voyage, but because he had already started on another job he didn't go - good job as otherwise my OH probably wouldn't exist!

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