Our relationship with animals is complex and contradictory; we hunt, kill and eat them, yet we also love, respect and protect them. This ambivalent relationship is further complicated by the fact that we attribute human emotions and intelligence to animals. We even go as far as likening them to children and treating them as family members. Drawing on a diverse range of case studies, Animals in Person attempts to unravel our close and fascinating link with the animal kingdom. This book highlights the theme of cross-species intimacy in contexts such as livestock care, pet keeping, and the use of animals in tourism. The studies draw on data from different parts of the world, including New Guinea, Nepal, India, Japan, Greece, Britain, The Netherlands and Australia. Animals in Person documents the existence of relations between humans and animals that, in many respects, recall relations among humans themselves.
John Knight is Lecturer, Queen's University of Belfast