Until the advent of steam and later the internal combustion engine, the fortunes of man and beast were intimately and essentially bound together. Animals played a variety of fundamental roles in a range of human work and leisure activities such as transport, agriculture, industry, warfare, sport and recreation. Their importance to human progress has become increasingly hard to grasp for our largely urbanized society, from which the animal world has become ever more remote. Animal Encounters draws on the author's lifetime interest in the fields of art history, topographical literature, archaeology, history and archaeozoology, to provide an overview of the evolving relations between the human and animal populations of the British Isles from the Norman Conquest to World War I. In this very readable, instructive and well-illustrated narrative, Arthur MacGregor explores the animal kingdom from bees to horses, and the range of human activities, from pigeon-breeding to bear-baiting, showing how interdependent the animal-human relationship has been throughout history. Animal Encounters will have a broad appeal, aimed at all those with sympathy for and an interest in the animal world.
Full Product DetailsAuthor: Arthur MacGregor
Publisher: Reaktion Books
Imprint: Reaktion Books
Dimensions: Width: 19.00cm , Height: 4.30cm , Length: 25.00cm
ISBN 10: 1861898495
Publication Date: 15 June 2012
Audience: General/trade , General
Publisher's Status: Active
Availability: To order
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Critics reviewing the wonderful new book Animal Encounters: Human And Animal Interaction In Britain From The Norman Conquest To World War One , by Arthur MacGregor, have gasped over the ancient sport of whipping a blinded bear, but have failed to point out that we are little better today. --Liz Jones Mail on Sunday
<br><br> This is an enthralling book. Surely, no one before has given such a wide-ranging account of people's encounters with animals through the centuries, revealing all the ingenious ways in which they have handled, tended, exploited, even cruelly sported with them. All the practicalities are described, bringing a rich, and sometimes surprising, story to life, further enhanced by numerous pertinent illustrations. Final remarks on the distance separating us these days from once routine connections with badgers and beavers, wild pigs in forests, pigeons in dovecotes and eels in moats will prompt some sobering reflections. Animal Encounters is riveting from beginning to end. --Joan Thirsk former general editor of the series The Agrarian History of England and Wales
Arthur MacGregor is a former archaeologist and was Senior Curator at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, UK. He is also the author of Bone, Antler, Ivory and Horn (1985) and Curiosity and Enlightenment: Collectors and Collections from the Sixteenth to the Nineteenth Century (2007).
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