bestiary

“The wild is predator. It is the unexpected and the unpredictable. It is also dream.”

“Too often, wildness is equated with urban disorder, and wild animals end up as the symbolic equivalents of street criminals; or conversely, they acquire all the psychopathic connotations of sentimentalized pets or surrogate people. The Otherness of wild animals is the gestalt which we are constantly refashioning in the image of our own urban confusion and alienation. Where nature is most opaquely unknowable, as in the “character” of animals, we intensely crave the comfort and anthropomorphic definition and categorization. And where it is the human world that threatens, this impulse is mirrored in our desire to give our fears shape: as beasts. Bestiaries, by definition, are hierarchies of allegorical fauna (including familiar species in their double role as social symbols) crowned by monsters. And monsters, embodying inchoate fears in concrete forms, are sometimes messiahs of consolation.”

Mike Davis
Ecology of Fear

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Published in: on June 13, 2011 at 6:05 pm  Leave a Comment  

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