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Looking at Animals in Human History

By: Linda Kalof

240 pages, 69 illus

Reaktion Books

Hardback | Jul 2007 | #168306 | ISBN-13: 9781861893345
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £24.99 $32/€30 approx

About this book

From the first cave paintings to Britta Jaschinski's provocative animal photography, it seems we have been describing and portraying animals, in some form or another, for as long as we have been human. This book provides a broad historical overview of our representations of animals, from prehistory to postmodernity, and how those representations have altered with changing social conditions.

Taking in a wide range of visual and textual materials, Linda Kalof unearths many surprising and revealing examples of our depictions of animals. She also examines animals in a broad sweep of literature, narrative and criticism: from Pliny the Elder's Natural History to Donna Haraway's writings on animal-human-machine interaction; and from accounts of the Black Plague and histories of the domestic animal and zoos, to the ways that animal stereotypes have been applied to people to highlight hierarchies of gender, race and class.

... this brief, well-documented volume provides a useful gateway into an important and absorbing body of scholarship. Clio Written in an engaging style with the author's keen attention focused upon her reader, Kalof's monograph provides a rapid and concise overview of the reciprocal relationship between animals and humans from pre-history to modern times ... The book should find a ready audience among animal lovers, who will find much to enjoy. Agricultural History Review Linda Kalof's account allows neither denial nor escape, while nourishing the commitment to somehow recraft actual inter-species relationships into more livable patterns. -- Professor Donna Haraway, History of Consciousness and Feminist Studies A vivid and encyclopedic survey of encounters between human and nonhuman animals across Western culture. Clear, readable, beautifully illustrated and always informative ... A valuable contribution to the growing field of human-animal studies. -- Randy Malamud, author of Reading Zoos and Poetic Animals and Animal Souls Linda Kalof devastates the idea that animals do not matter, that they are irrelevant to human history. Her fascinating book should provoke much discussion. -- Jim Mason, US lawyer and co-author of The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter Linda Kalof has brought a fresh approach to describing the multiplicity of ways in which humans have interacted with animals from the prey of ice age hunters to the virtual animals in today's electronic world. This eminently readable book will appeal not only to all those with an interest in the animal world but also to students of social and art history. -- Juliet Clutton-Brock, archaeozoologist and author of A Natural History of Domesticated Mammals


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Biography

Linda Kalof is Professor of Sociology at Michigan State University. Her books include Evaluating Social Science Research (1996) and The Earthscan Reader in Environmental Values (2005), and she is co-editor of A Cultural History of Animals: v. 1-6 (2007) and The Animals Reader: The Essential Classic and Contemporary Writings (2007).

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