Animal Studies Bibliography

Linda Kalof, Seven Mattes, Amy Fitzgerald
Animal Studies Program, Michigan State University

Animals as Symbols

This category includes the various ways in which animals are used as symbols in human society. This includes animals as symbols of a nation, animal symbolism in folk tales, and a myriad of other instances of animals as representations of human culture.

This bibliography is an ongoing project of the Animal Studies Program at Michigan State University.  We welcome additions and corrections to this bibliography by email:

For category definitions and criteria for inclusion, please click here.

Use the links at the bottom of the page to "Jump" to a category.

Alger, Janet and Steven Alger. 1997. Beyond Mead: Symbolic interaction between humans and felines. Society and Animals 5(1): 65-81.

Arluke, Arnold and Boria Sax. 1992. Understanding nazi animal protection and the holocaust. Anthrozoös 5(1): 6-31.

Arluke, Arnold and Clinton R. Sanders. 1996. Regarding Animals . Philadelphia: Temple University Press.

Arnold, Arnold James (ed.). 1996. Monsters, Tricksters, and Sacred Cows: Animal Tales and American Identities. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia Press.

Baenninger, Ronald. 1988. Animals in art: Some trends across three millennia. Journal of Psychology 122(2): 183-191. SUMMARY

Baenninger, R., R. Dengelmaier, J. Navarrete, et al. 2000. What's in a name? Uncovering the connotative meanings of animal names. Anthrozoös 13(2): 113-117.

Baker, Steve. 1993/2001. Picturing the Beast: Animals, Identity, and Representation . Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Bartov, Omer. 1996. Murder in Our Midst: The Holocaust, Industrial Killing, and Representation . New York: Oxford University Press.

Berger, John. Animals as Metaphor. New Society 39 (1977):504-4.

Berland, Jody. 2008. “Cat and Mouse: Iconographies of Nature and Desire.” Cultural Studies 22.2 (Spring): 431-454.

Berland, Jody. 2009. “Animal and/as Medium: Symbolic Work in Communicative Regimes.” Global South 3.1 (Spring ): 42-65.

Boehrer, Bruce Thomas. 2002. Shakespeare among the Animals: Nature and Society in the Drama of Early Modern England. Early Modern Cultural Studies. 1st edition. New York: Palgrave.

Boffa, Alessandra. 2003. You're an Animal Viskovitz! Vintage.

Boissonneault, Marie-France. 2010. Every Living Being: Representations of Nonhuman Animals in the Exploration of Human Well-Being. Inkwater Press.

Brabant , Sarah and Linda Mooney. 1989. When ‘critters' act like people: Anthropomorphism in greeting cards. Sociological Spectrum 9: 477-494. SUMMARY

Brockway, R.W. 1989. The masks of Mickey Mouse: Symbols of a generation. Journal of Popular Culture 22(4): 25-34.

Bryld, Mette, and Nina Lykke. 2000. Cosmodolphins: Feminist Cultural Studies of Technology, Animals, and the Sacred. London and New York: Zed Books.

Burt, Jonathan. 2001. The illumination of the animal kingdom: The role of light and electricity in animal representation. Society and Animals 9(3): 203-228.

Burt, Jonathan. 2002. Animals in Film . London: Reaktion Books.

Burt, Marianna R. 1988. The animal as alter ego: Cruelty, altruism, and the work of art. In Andrew N. Rowan (ed.). Animals and People Sharing the World . 117-135. Hanover: University Press of New England. SUMMARY

Carmack, Betty J. 1997. Realistic representations of companion animals in comic art in the USA . Anthrozoös 10(2/3): 108-120. SUMMARY

Church, Jill Howard. 1996. In focus: How the media portrays animals. The Animals' Agenda 16(1): 24-28. SUMMARY

Cooper, Jilly. 1983. Animals in War . London: Heinemann.

Cox, Christopher and Nato Thompson. (eds). 2005. Becoming Animal: Contemporary Art in the Animal Kingdom . Cambridge: MIT Press.

Daneshavari, Abbas. 1986. Animal Symbolism in Warqa wa Gulshah. Oxford: University of Oxford.

Dembicki, Matt. 2004. Animal Stew! Fairfax, VA.

Dent, A . 1976. Animals in Art. London : Phaidon.

Dick, P. 1972. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? London : Panther.

Diesendruck, Gil. 2001. Essentialism in Brazilian children's extension of animal names. Developmental Psychology 37(1): 49-60.

Emberly, Julia V. 1998. The Cultural Politics of Fur. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

Erickson, Julie Liesse. 1986. Ads' animal magnetism has deep roots. Advertising Age 57 (Feb. 10): 45. SUMMARY

Evans, Edward Payson. 1896. Animal Symbolism in Ecclesiastical Architecture, by E.P. Evans, with a Bibliography and Seventy-Eight Illustrations. London: W. Heinemann.

Frink, Helen. 1987. Animal Symbolism in Hofmannsthal's Works . New York: P.Lang.

Glickman, Stephen E. 1995. The spotted hyena from Aristotle to the Lion King: Reputation is everything. Social Research 62(3): 501-538. SUMMARY

Gigliotti, Carol. 2006. “Leonardo’s Choice: the ethics of artists working with genetic technologies.” In C. Gigliotti, (ed.) Special Issue: Genetic Technologies and Animals AI and Society 20.1.

Gigliotti, Carol. 2010. "Heartburn: Indigestion, Contention, and Animals in Contemporary Art. Antennae:The Journal of Nature in Visual Culture, Issue 12, Fall.

Glosecki, Stephen O. 1996. Movable Beasts: The Manifold Implication of Early Germanic Animal Imagery. A Lawrence, Elizabeth A. 1990. Symbol of a nation: The bald eagle in American culture. Journal of American Culture 13(1): 63-69. SUMMARY

Glosecki, Stephen O. 1996. Movable Beasts: The Manifold Implication of Early Germanic Animal Imagery. A nimals in the Middle Ages: A Book of Essays . 3-23. New York and London: Garland Publishing, Inc.

Greene, Eric S.  1995.  Ethnocategories, Social Intercourse, Fear and Redemption:  Comment on Laurent.  Society and Animals 3(1): 79-88

Greene, Eric. 1993. On Lawrence 's ‘The Symbolic Role of Animals…' Society and Animals 1(1): 39-44.

Harbrecht, Doug. 1993. Animals in the ad game. International Wildlife 23(6): 38-43. SUMMARY

Haraway, Donna. 1991. Simians, Cyborgs, and Women: The Reinvention of Nature . London and New York: Routledge.

Haraway, Donna J. 2007. When Species Meet. Minneapolois: University of Minnesota Press.

Howe, Nicholas. 1995. Fabling beasts: Traces in memory. Social Research 62(3): 641-659.

Jones, Dena M. 1996. American media coverage of animal protection. Anthrozoös 9(2/3): 72- 80.

Jones, Dena M. 1997. The media and policy decisions affecting animals. Anthrozoös 10(1): 8- 13. SUMMARY

Jones, Dena M. 1997. The media's response to animal rights activism. Anthrozoös 10(2/3): 67- 75.

Kac, Eduardo. (ed). Signs of Life: Bio Art and Beyond. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.

Kalof, Linda and Ramona Fruja Amthor. 2010. Cultural Representations of Problem Animals in National Geographic. Etudes rurales 185, 165-180.

Kean, H. 2003. An exploration of the sculptures of Greyfriars Bobby, Edinburgh, Scotland, and the Brown Dog, Battersea, South London, England. Society and Animals 11 (4): 353-373.

Lawrence, Elizabeth A. 1994. Seeing in nature what is ours: Poetry and the human-animal bond. Journal of American Culture 17(4): 47-53.

Lawrence, Elizabeth A. 1990. The tamed wild: symbolic bears in American culture.  In Ray Browne, Marshall William Fishwick, and Kevin Browne (eds.) Dominant Symbols in Popular Culture .   Ohio : Bowling Green State University Popular Press. 

Lawrence, Elizabeth A. 1991. Animals in war: History and implications for the future. Anthrozoös 4(3): 145-153. SUMMARY

Lawrence, Elizabeth A. 1993. The symbolic role of animals in the Plains Indian Sun Dance. Society and Animals 1(1): 17-37. SUMMARY

Layton , R. 1985. The cultural context of hunter-gather rock art. Man. 20(3): 434-453.

Lerner, Jennifer and Linda Kalof. 1999. The animal text: Message and meaning in television advertisements. The Sociological Quarterly 40(4): 565-586.

Lévi-Strauss, Claude. 1963 . Totemism . Toronto: S.J. Reginald Saunders/Beacon Press.

Franklin, Adrian . 2006. Animal Nation: The True Story of Animals and Australia. Sydney: UNSW Press.

Manning-Sanders, Ruth. 1980. Animal Stories . Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin.

Menninger, K.A. 1951. Totemic aspects of contemporary attitudes toward animals. In G.B. Wilbur and W. Muensterberg (eds.). Psychoanalysis and Culture , 42-74. New York: International Universities Press.

Mitchell, Robert W., Nicholas S. Thompson and H. Lyn Miles (eds.). 1997. Anthropomorphism, Anecdotes, and Animals . Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Mitchell, W.J.T. 1998. The Last Dinosaur Book: The Life and Times of a Cultural Icon . Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press.

Morgado, Marcia A. 1993. Animal trademark emblems on fashion apparel: A semiotic interpretation. Clothing and Textiles Research Journal 11(2): 16-20. SUMMARY

Myers, Gene. 2002. Symbolic animals and the developing self. Anthrozoös 15(1): 19-36.

Nadeau, Chantel. 2001. Fur Nation: From Beaver to Brigitte Bardot. New York: Routledge.

Neal, A. G. 1985. Animism and totemism in popular culture. Journal of Popular Culture 19(2): 15-23. SUMMARY

Noske, Barbara. 1989. Humans and Other Animals: Beyond the Boundaries of Anthropology . London: Pluto Press.

Ohnuki-Tierney, Emiko. 1987. The Monkey as Mirror: Symbolic Transformations in Japanese History and Ritual. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Pollock, Mary S., and Catherine Rainwater, (eds.). 2004. Figuring Animals: Essays on Animal Images in Art, Literature, Philosophy and Popular Culture. New York: Palgrave.

Rajecki, D.W., Jeffrey Lee Rasmussen and Heather D. Craft. 1993. Labels and the treatment of animals: Archival and experimental cases. Society and Animals 1(1): 45-60.

Ritvo, Harriet. 1997. The Platypus and the Mermaid and Other Figments of the Classifying Imagination. Harvard University Press.

Robbins, Mary E. 1996. The Truculent Toad in the Middle Ages. In Animals in the Middle Ages: A Book of Essays . 25-47. New York and London: Garland Publishing, Inc.

Rowan, Andrew. 1995. Human-animal relationships: Symbol and culture. Anthrozoös 8(2): 67-68.

Sanderson, Ivan Terence. 1946. Animal Tales; An Anthology of Animal Literature of all Countries. New York: A.A. Knopf.

Sax, Boria. 1990. The Frog King: On Legends, Fables, Fairy Tales and Anecdotes of Animals . New York: Pace University Press.

Sheehan, James, and Morton Sosna (eds.). 1990. The Boundaries of Humanity: Humans, Animals, Machines. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Simons, John. 2002. Animal Rights and the Politics of Literary Representation . New York: Palgrave.

Vizenor, Gerald. 1995. Authored animals: Creature tropes in Native American fiction. Social Research 62(3): 661-683.

Waner, Marina. 1995. From the Beast to the Blonde: On Fairy Tales and Their Tellers. London: Chattos and Windus.

Watanabe, Chikako E. 2002. Animal symbolism in Mesopotamia: A contextual approach. Wien: Institut für Orientalistik der Universität Wien.

Whit, Burnett. 1956. Animal Spirits; A Carnival of Prose, Poetry, and Cartoons. Philadelphia, Lippincott.

Willis, R.G. (ed.). 1990. Signifying Animals: Human Meaning in the Natural World . London: Unwin Hyman.

Visit the Michigan State University Homepage Return to the Animal Studies Homepage