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This book explores the varying roles of animals as property, food and sexual objects, and the complex relationship that this created with the people and world around them. The author takes an interdisciplinary approach to the subject, weaving a historical narrative that includes economic, legal, theological, literary and artistic sources.
The author shows how by the end of the Middle Ages the lines between humans and animals had blurred completely, making us recognise the beast that lay within us all.
Preface to the Second Edition Introduction: What is an animal? 1: Animals as Property Animal Use Animal Values Attitudes and Ambiguities 2: Animals as Food Wild Animals Domestic Animals Attitudes Toward Food 3: Animal Sexuality Sexual Characteristics of Animals Bestiality 4: Animals as Human Exemplars Classical Heritage Medieval Rediscovery The Animals 5: Animals as Humans Animals on Trial Companion Animals, or Pets 6: Humans as Animals Creatures on the Borders Bestial Humans Metamorphosis Conclusion: What is a Human? Appendix: Relative Animal Values Notes Bibliography
Joyce E. Salisbury is the Frankenthal Professor of History Emerita at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, USA. She has published widely, and is the author of The Blood of Martyrs (2004), and Church Fathers, Independent Virgins (1992), and the editor of Sex in the Middle Ages (1991) and Medieval World of Nature (1993).
.a brave and fascinating exploration of an area that has so far been rather neglected by both historical and literary critics. The Beast Within provides extremely valuable information on the legal and cultural background of the human-animal relationship. -- Studies in the Age of Chaucer