In Civilized Creatures, Jennifer Mason challenges some of our most enduring ideas about how encounters with nonhuman nature shaped American literature and culture. Mason argues that in the second half of the nineteenth century the most powerful influence on Americans' understanding of their affinities with animals was not increasing separation from the pastoral and the wilderness; instead, it was the population's feelings about the ostensibly civilized animals they encountered in their daily lives. Americans of diverse backgrounds, Mason shows, found it attractive as well as politic to imagine themselves as most closely connected to those creatures who shared humans' aptitude for civilized life. And to the minds of many in this period, national prosperity depended less on periodic exposure to untamed, wild nature than it did on the proper care and keeping of such animals within suburban and urban environments. Combining literary analysis with cultural histories of equestrianism, petkeeping, and the animal welfare movement, Civilized Creatures offers new readings of works by Susan Warner, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Charles W. Chesnutt. In each case, Mason demonstrates that understanding contemporary relationships between humans and animals is essential for understanding the debates about gender, race, and cultural power enacted in these texts.
Examining a wide range of works, from Gulliver's Travels to The Hunger Games, Representing the Modern Animal in Culture employs key theoretical apparatuses of Animal Studies to literary texts. Contributors address the multifarious modes of animal representation and the range of human-animal interactions that have emerged in the past 300 years.
Paradoxically, however, each of these "realistic" novelists, other than Sterne, failed in his attempt to erect character as a moral buffer against the suspense of a commercially driven world."--Jacket.
The concept of 'modernity' is central to many disciplines, but what is modernity to animals? Susan Nance answers this question through a radical reinterpretation of the life of Jumbo the elephant. In the 1880s, consumers, the media, zoos, circuses and taxidermists, and (unknowingly) Jumbo himself, transformed the elephant from an orphan of the global ivory trade and zoo captive into a distracting international celebrity. Citizens on two continents imaged Jumbo as a sentient individual and pet, but were aghast when he died in an industrial accident and his remains were absorbed by the taxidermic and animal rendering industries reserved for anonymous animals. The case of Jumbo exposed the 'human dilemma' of modern living, wherein people celebrated individual animals to cope or distract themselves from the wholesale slaughter of animals required by modern consumerism.
Almost everyone likes dogs, even those who prefer cats as pets. So it's not surprising that writers have devoted a great deal of verbiage indeed to describe their ongoing love affair with the canine breed. You'll find herein all kinds of tales focusing on dogs: science fiction stories, mysteries, horror tales, westerns, memoirs, humorous accounts, and first-person doggie narratives. There are well-known pieces by writers such as Jack London, James Oliver Curwood, Washington Irving, Saki, E. C. Tubb, John Gregory Betancourt, Robert Hood, and Jack Dann--and stories by authors who are relatively unknown today. Here are twenty-five marvelous tales of dogs and their interactions with humans, plus five bonus poems: "The Call of the Wild," by Jack London "My Friend Bobby," by Alan E. Nourse "Neb," by Robert Reginald "My Friend," by Anonymous [poem] "Kerfol," by Edith Wharton "The Monster," by S. M. Tenneshaw "Tinker," by E. Nesbit "Phantom Dogs," by Elliott O'Donnell "The Dogs of Hannoie," by E. C. Tubb "Warlock," by Gordon Stables [poem] "Spaniel and Newfoundland Dogs," by Edward Jesse "A Dog of Flanders," by Ouida "Guard Dog," by Robert Hood "Rip Van Winkle," by Washington Irving "Stories of Dog Sagacity," by W. H. G. Kingston "The Best Friend," by Meribah Philbrick Abbott [poem] "Grab a Knife and Save a Life," by Mark E. Burgess "Kazan," by James Oliver Curwood "Mercy's Reward," by Sir Edwin Arnold [poem] "Snap: The Story of a Bull-Terrier," by Ernest Thompson Seton "Dogs Questing," by John Gregory Betancourt "The Widow's Dog," by Mary Russell Mitford "The Beast of Space," by F. E. Hardart "Oil of Dog," by Ambrose Bierce "Spirit Dog," by Jack Dann "Little Doggerel," by Robert Reginald [poem] "A Pilgrim," by Robert W. Chambers "The Open Window," by Saki "Memoirs of a Yellow Dog," by O. Henry "The Sound of the Barkervilles," by Robert Reginald. And don't forget to search this ebook store for "Wildside Megapack" to see more volumes in the series, including more animal stories (like Cats), plus mysteries, adventure stories, westerns, ghost stories, science fiction -- and much, much more!