Beastly Possessions: Animals in Victorian Consumer Culture

By Sarah Amato

© 2015

In Beastly Possessions, Sarah Amato chronicles the unusual ways in which Victorians of every social class brought animals into their daily lives. Captured, bred, exhibited, collected, and sold, ordinary pets and exotic creatures – as well as their representations – became commodities within Victorian Britain’s flourishing consumer culture.

As a pet, an animal could be a companion, a living parlour decoration, and proof of a household’s social and moral status. In the zoo, it could become a public pet, an object of curiosity, a symbol of empire, or even a consumer mascot. Either kind of animal might be painted, photographed, or stuffed as a taxidermic specimen.

Using evidence ranging from pet-keeping manuals and scientific treatises to novels, guidebooks, and ephemera, this fascinating, well-illustrated study opens a window into an underexplored aspect of life in Victorian Britain.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Illustrations: 41
  • Dimensions: 6.5in x 1.1in x 9.5in
Product Formats

SaveUP TO 9239

Book Formats

SKU# SP003854

  • PUBLISHED OCT 2015

    From: $51.75

    Regular Price: $69.00

    ISBN 9781442648746
  • PUBLISHED NOV 2015

    From: $51.75

    Regular Price: $69.00

Quick Overview

In Beastly Possessions, Sarah Amato chronicles the unusual ways in which Victorians of every social class brought animals into their daily lives.

Beastly Possessions: Animals in Victorian Consumer Culture

By Sarah Amato

© 2015

In Beastly Possessions, Sarah Amato chronicles the unusual ways in which Victorians of every social class brought animals into their daily lives. Captured, bred, exhibited, collected, and sold, ordinary pets and exotic creatures – as well as their representations – became commodities within Victorian Britain’s flourishing consumer culture.

As a pet, an animal could be a companion, a living parlour decoration, and proof of a household’s social and moral status. In the zoo, it could become a public pet, an object of curiosity, a symbol of empire, or even a consumer mascot. Either kind of animal might be painted, photographed, or stuffed as a taxidermic specimen.

Using evidence ranging from pet-keeping manuals and scientific treatises to novels, guidebooks, and ephemera, this fascinating, well-illustrated study opens a window into an underexplored aspect of life in Victorian Britain.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Illustrations: 41
  • Dimensions: 6.5in x 1.1in x 9.5in
  • Reviews

    ‘This book is a great read and offers much insight to readers who want to know more about the connections between human and animal world.’


    Jane Hamlett
    Journal of Modern History vol 89:03:2017

    “In Beastly Possessions, Sarah Amato addresses an impressive array of archives. Her book is a very important contribution to animal studies.”


    Martin Danahay, Department of English Language and Literature, Brock University
  • Author Information

    Sarah Amato is a lecturer in material culture and modern British history at the University of Toronto.
  • Table of contents

    Introduction

    1. The Social Lives of Pets

    2. Sexy Beasts, Fallen Felines, and Pampered Pomeranians

    3. In the Zoo: Civilizing Animals and Displaying People

    4. The White Elephant in London: On Trickery, Racism, and Advertising

    5. Dead Things: The Afterlives of Animals

Related Titles