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Rat

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Rat Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The rat has been described as the shadow of the human: from ancient times through today, it has followed man via routes of commerce and conquest to eventually inhabit nearly every part of the world. Rats have a bad reputation—they spread disease, destroy agricultural produce, and thrive in the darkest corners of human habitation—but they have recently found credibility as a major resource for scientific experimentation. Jonathan Burt here traces the fortunes of the rat in history, myth, and culture.

Central to Rat is the history of the relationship between humans and rats and, in particular, the complex human attitudes toward these shrewd creatures. Burt examines why the rat is viewed as more loathsome and verminous than other parasitic animals and considers why humans have had diametrically opposed attitudes about the rat: some cultures greatly admire the rat for its skills, while others consider the rat the scourge of the earth. Burt also draws on a wide range of examples to explore the rat's role in science, culture, and art, from its appearances in children's literature such as The Wind in the Willows to Victorian rat- and dog-baiting pits to its symbolic roles in folklore.

Rat offers an intriguing and richly illustrated study of one of nature's most remarkable creatures and ultimately finds that the rat exists as a perverse totem for the worst excesses of human behavior.

About the Author

Jonathan Burt is the author of Animals in Film and the general editor of the Animal series.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781861892249
Author:
Burt, Jonathan
Publisher:
Reaktion Books
Subject:
General
Subject:
Mammals
Subject:
General Pets
Subject:
General Nature
Subject:
Animals - Mammals
Subject:
Nature Studies-Mammals
Copyright:
Edition Description:
1
Series:
Reaktion Books - Animal
Publication Date:
November 2005
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
46 color plates, 77 halftones
Pages:
192
Dimensions:
7.5 x 5.29 in

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Related Subjects

Education » Multicultural
Pets » General
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Zoology » Mammals
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Mammals » General

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