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Dimensions:
190 × 135 mm
192 pages
Format:
Paperback
ISBN:
9781780234885
Illustrations:
102 illustrations, 80 in colour
Published:
13 Jun 2016
Series:
Animal

Beetle Adam Dodd

From ancient Egyptian deities to German automobiles, beetles have left an indelible mark on human cultures around the world. Comprising more than 350,000 species, beetles are among the most prolific animals on Earth, even if we rarely give them a second thought. In this book Adam Dodd explores the world of the beetle and its sometimes astounding and bizarre intersections with the world of the human being.

Beetle relates this resilient insect’s emergence from the ‘Great Dying’ extinction event some 250 million years ago, showing how it became a permanent fixture in the natural world, thriving in the inhabitation of niches. Inspiring early occult beliefs and religious myths, the beetle also finds its way into art, folklore, literature and science. Dodd uncovers the beetle’s ongoing place in the aesthetic appreciation of nature, and shows how knowledge of beetle anatomy is assisting the development of cutting-edge cybernetics, blurring the boundary between science and fiction.

Thoroughly illustrated, bursting with historical detail and accessibly written, this cultural and natural history of the beetle is sure to change the way readers think about their relationship with these ancient, enduringly captivating animals.

‘Dodd’s fluid writing and sturdy conjectures build a cross-cultural framework (from the Egyptian afterlife to Japanese video games and the US military’s fascination with cyborg beetles) on which to hang his insights. Recommended’ – Choice

‘Adam Dodd explores the world of beetles who sometimes have astounding and bizarre interactions with the world of human beings. From ancient Egyptian deities to German automobiles, beetles have left an indelible mark on human cultures around the world. Inspiring early occult beliefs and religious myths, the beetle also fi nds its way into art, folklore, literature and science. Dodd uncovers the beetle’s ongoing place in the aesthetic appreciation of nature and shows how knowledge of beetle anatomy is assisting the development of cutting-edge cybernetics and blurring the boundary between science and fiction . . . Both Animal series books are extremely well illustrated, bursting with historical detail and engagingly written. These exceptional accounts of the cultural and natural history of beetles and moths will undoubtedly change the way readers think about their relationship with these captivating insects.’ – European Journal of Entomology

‘This book is packed with fascinating material, including many interesting stories.’ – The American Biology Teacher

‘In Beetle, the author explores the world of the beetle and how, over millions of years, it became a permanent fixture in the natural world, as well finding its way into art, folklore, literature and science . . . Thoroughly illustrated, full of historical detail and accessibly written, this cultural and natural history of the beetle could change the way that we think about our relationship with these creatures who are all part of God’s creation.’ – Methodist Recorder

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Adam Dodd is contributing co-editor of Animals on Display: The Creaturely in Museums, Zoos, and Natural History (2013) and is currently Sessional Lecturer at the School of Communication and Arts, University of Queensland, Australia.