Beasts “R” Us: The Merging of Man, Nature and Animal in Zodiac Systems

By Ooi Kee Beng

February 2022 CURIOSITY CURES
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THE CRUCIAL POSITION that animals have in human civilisation is an intriguing one.Taming animals for labour and transport or for food and company is a criterion of civilisation, as is the worship or contempt, as the case may be, of chosen animals in certain cases. But our relationship to animals goes much further than that, and reveals a co-existence we cannot deny.It stretches to the extent of humans attempting to describe ourselves in animal – and sometimes in beastly –...

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Ooi Kee Beng

is the Executive Director of Penang Institute. His recent books include The Eurasian Core and its Edges: Dialogues with Wang Gungwu on the History of the World (ISEAS 2016). Homepage: wikibeng.com


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