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Breaking and Shaping Beastly Bodies (Paperback)

Animals as Material Culture in the Middle Ages

P&S History > Medieval World > Medieval Archaeology P&S History > Medieval World > Medieval Society & Culture P&S History > Social Science & Culture > Anthropology & Sociology

Imprint: Oxbow Books
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9781842172186
Published: 24th January 2007
Casemate UK Academic

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An important human trait is our inclination to develop complex relationships with numerous other species. In the great majority of cases however, these mutualistic relationships involve a pair of species, whose co-evolution has been achieved through behavioural adaptation driving positive selection pressures. Humans go a step further, opportunistically and, it sometimes seems, almost arbitrarily elaborating relationships with many other species, whether through domestication, pet-keeping, taming for menageries, deifying, pest-control, conserving iconic species, or recruiting as mascots. When we consider medieval attitudes to animals we are tackling a fundamentally human, and distinctly idiosyncratic, behavioural trait. The sixteen papers presented here investigate animals from zoological, anthropological, artistic and economic perspectives, within the context of the medieval world.

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