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New Worlds, New Animals From Menagerie to Zoological Park in the Nineteenth Century

by R.J. Hoage

New Worlds, New Animals From Menagerie to Zoological Park in the Nineteenth Century Synopsis

From King Solomon's collections of apes and peacocks to the menageries of English and Hapsburg monarchs, the display of exotic animals has delighted and amazed observers for centuries. Originally prized as symbols of elite wealth and power, such collections have been dramatically transformed since 1800-particularly in terms of audience and purpose. In New Worlds, New Animals, R. J. Hoage and William A. Deiss assemble essays that concentrate on the development of the modern zoo in the nineteenth century. Taking an in-depth look at the social climate of the century, they chart the transition from elaborate menageries for exclusive patrons to public facilities that expressed the power and might of nations to institutions dedicated to public education, wildlife conservation, and biological research. These changes reflect the larger transformation of the West-from the colonial era's desire to tame newly discovered continents to today's more egalitarian, conservation-minded world. New Worlds, New Animals begins with an overview of the history of menageries in antiquity and their development in Europe and the United States. Zoos in many countries had quite different origins-including a fish market that became an animal dealership before becoming a zoo and an Australian way station originally designed to acclimate Old World domestic stock to a new continent. The authors also examine the period in the United States between 1830 and 1880, when popular traveling animal shows and circuses gave way to the first public zoos in New York and Philadelphia. They take an in-depth look at the establishment of the National Zoological Park in Washington, D.C.-the first zoo created to preserve endangered species. Illustrated with nearly 100 photographs, New Worlds, New Animals gives readers a new respect for and understanding of the role of zoos in social and cultural history.

New Worlds, New Animals From Menagerie to Zoological Park in the Nineteenth Century Press Reviews

This volume succeeds in presenting a balanced view of zoological park development in the last century, and has a global perspective... it is truly a fine effort of scholarship and invaluable to any person seeking a greater knowledge of the history, aspirations, and roles of zoos in Western Civilization. * Quarterly Review of Biology *

Book Information

ISBN: 9780801853739
Publication date: 7th May 1996
Author: R.J. Hoage
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Format: Paperback / softback
Pagination: 224 pages
Categories: Social & cultural history, Zoos & wildlife parks,

About R.J. Hoage

Robert J. Hoage is chief of the office of public affairs for the National Zoological Park in Washington D.C. William A. Deiss is associate archivist at the Smithsonian Institution.

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