Hunters, Herders, and Hamburgers

The Past and Future of Human-animal Relationships

Author: Richard W. Bulliet

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 9780231130776

Category: History

Page: 253

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Examines the ever-changing realtionships between animals and humans, looking at how certain species were selected to be domesticated.
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Animals and Society

An Introduction to Human-Animal Studies

Author: Margo DeMello

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231526768

Category: Nature

Page: 488

View: 4208

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Considering that much of human society is structured through its interaction with non-human animals, and since human society relies heavily on the exploitation of animals to serve human needs, human–animal studies has become a rapidly expanding field of research, featuring a number of distinct positions, perspectives, and theories that require nuanced explanation and contextualization. The first book to provide a full overview of human–animal studies, this volume focuses on the conceptual construction of animals in American culture and the way in which it reinforces and perpetuates hierarchical human relationships rooted in racism, sexism, and class privilege. Margo DeMello considers interactions between humans and animals within the family, the law, the religious and political system, and other major social institutions, and she unpacks the different identities humans fashion for themselves and for others through animals. Essays also cover speciesism and evolutionary continuities; the role and preservation of animals in the wild; the debate over zoos and the use of animals in sports; domestication; agricultural practices such as factory farming; vivisection; animal cruelty; animal activism; the representation of animals in literature and film; and animal ethics. Sidebars highlight contemporary controversies and issues, with recommendations for additional reading, educational films, and related websites. DeMello concludes with an analysis of major philosophical positions on human social policy and the future of human–animal relations.
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Entertaining Elephants

Animal Agency and the Business of the American Circus

Author: Susan Nance

Publisher: JHU Press

ISBN: 1421408732

Category: History

Page: 304

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Consider the career of an enduring if controversial icon of American entertainment: the genial circus elephant. In Entertaining Elephants Susan Nance examines elephant behavior—drawing on the scientific literature of animal cognition, learning, and communications—to offer a study of elephants as actors (rather than objects) in American circus entertainment between 1800 and 1940. By developing a deeper understanding of animal behavior, Nance asserts, we can more fully explain the common history of all species. Entertaining Elephants is the first account that uses research on animal welfare, health, and cognition to interpret the historical record, examining how both circus people and elephants struggled behind the scenes to meet the profit necessities of the entertainment business. The book does not claim that elephants understood, endorsed, or resisted the world of show business as a human cultural or business practice, but it does speak of elephants rejecting the conditions of their experience. They lived in a kind of parallel reality in the circus, one that was defined by their interactions with people, other elephants, horses, bull hooks, hay, and the weather. Nance’s study informs and complicates contemporary debates over human interactions with animals in entertainment and beyond, questioning the idea of human control over animals and people's claims to speak for them. As sentient beings, these elephants exercised agency, but they had no way of understanding the human cultures that created their captivity, and they obviously had no claim on (human) social and political power. They often lived lives of apparent desperation. -- Etienne Benson, author of Wired Wilderness
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Being Animal

Beasts and Boundaries in Nature Ethics

Author: Anna Peterson

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231534264

Category: Nature

Page: 240

View: 735

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For most people, animals are the most significant aspects of the nonhuman world. They symbolize nature in our imaginations, in popular media and culture, and in campaigns to preserve wilderness, yet scholars habitually treat animals and the environment as mutually exclusive objects of concern. Conducting the first examination of animals' place in popular and scholarly thinking about nature, Anna L. Peterson builds a nature ethic that conceives of nonhuman animals as active subjects who are simultaneously parts of both nature and human society. Peterson explores the tensions between humans and animals, nature and culture, animals and nature, and domesticity and wildness. She uses our intimate connections with companion animals to examine nature more broadly. Companion animals are liminal creatures straddling the boundary between human society and wilderness, revealing much about the mutually constitutive relationships binding humans and nature together. Through her paradigm-shifting reflections, Peterson disrupts the artificial boundaries between two seemingly distinct categories, underscoring their fluid and continuous character.
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The Oxford Handbook of Environmental History

Author: Andrew C. Isenberg

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199394474

Category: History

Page: 640

View: 6953

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The field of environmental history emerged just decades ago but has established itself as one of the most innovative and important new approaches to history, one that bridges the human and natural world, the humanities and the sciences. With the current trend towards internationalizing history, environmental history is perhaps the quintessential approach to studying subjects outside the nation-state model, with pollution, global warming, and other issues affecting the earth not stopping at national borders. With 25 essays, this Handbook is global in scope and innovative in organization, looking at the field thematically through such categories as climate, disease, oceans, the body, energy, consumerism, and international relations.
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The Meanings of Rights

The Philosophy and Social Theory of Human Rights

Author: Costas Douzinas,Conor Gearty

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107027853

Category: Philosophy

Page: 340

View: 9162

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Questioning some of the repetitive and narrow theoretical writings on rights, a group of leading intellectuals examine human rights from philosophical, theological, historical, literary and political perspectives.
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The Wheel

Inventions and Reinventions

Author: Richard W. Bulliet

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231540612

Category: History

Page: 272

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In this book, Richard W. Bulliet focuses on three major phases in the evolution of the wheel and their relationship to the needs and ambitions of human society. He begins in 4000 B.C.E. with the first wheels affixed to axles. He then follows with the innovation of wheels turning independently on their axles and concludes five thousand years later with the caster, a single rotating and pivoting wheel. Bulliet's most interesting finding is that a simple desire to move things from place to place did not drive the wheel's development. If that were the case, the wheel could have been invented at any time almost anywhere in the world. By dividing the history of this technology into three conceptual phases and focusing on the specific men, women, and societies that brought it about, Bulliet expands the social, economic, and political significance of a tool we only partially understand. He underscores the role of gender, combat, and competition in the design and manufacture of wheels, adding vivid imagery to illustrate each stage of their development.
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Cotton, Climate, and Camels in Early Islamic Iran

A Moment in World History

Author: Richard W. Bulliet

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231148372

Category: History

Page: 167

View: 2915

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A boom in the production and export of cotton turned Iran into the richest region of the Islamic caliphate in the ninth and tenth centuries. Yet in the eleventh century, Iran's primacy ended as its agricultural economy entered a steep decline. Richard W. Bulliet advances several provocative explanations, for example that the boom in cotton production paralleled the spread of Islam and that Iran's agricultural decline stemmed from a significant cooling of the climate that lasted more than a century. Substantiating his argument with innovative quantitative research and scientific discoveries, Bulliet first establishes the relationship between Iran's cotton industry and Islam and then outlines the evidence for what he terms the "Big Chill." He then focuses on a lucrative but temperature-sensitive industry of cross-breeding one-humped and two-humped camels, concluding with an unusual concatenation of events that had a profound and long-lasting impact not just on the history of Iran but on the development of the world.
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