From the Romans who viewed the hedgehog as a weather prophet to modern gardeners who depend on the creature to keep gardens pest-free, the small, spiny animal has had a close connection with humans since the dawn of civilization. A creature of fascination, endearment, and cultural significance, it is one of the few wild animals that people can approach without the fear ofFrom the Romans who viewed the hedgehog as a weather prophet to modern gardeners who depend on the creature to keep gardens pest-free, the small, spiny animal has had a close connection with humans since the dawn of civilization. A creature of fascination, endearment, and cultural significance, it is one of the few wild animals that people can approach without the fear of attack or it running away. Exploring how this and other characteristics of the hedgehog have propelled it to become one of people’s favorite animals, this book examines the natural and cultural history of these symbolic creatures. Following the hedgehog as it spreads through Europe and Asia to the foot of Africa, Hugh Warwick describes its evolution, behavior, habitat, and diet, as well as its current endangered status. He also looks at the animal’s appeal, accessibility, and status as a pet in many countries, considering its appearance in advertising, films, children’s books, and games. Casting new light on the ancestors of Sonic and Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle, Hedgehog is a fascinating look at these prickly, admirable animals....
|Number of Pages||:||224 Pages|
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There is really only one word to describe this book, and that word is "enchanting"."Hedgehog" is loaded with lots of facts about hedgehogs. Did you know, for example, that there are fourteen different species of hedgehog?But what makes this delightful little book a cut above other animal books is the wonderful chapters on hedgehogs in art, literature, and philosophy.Growing up in New Zealand with hedgehogs living in our large back yard (we had a quarter of an acre), I got to see the wonderful procession of mother and hoglets on several occasions, and developed an abiding love for this adorable, quirky, little creatures. So imagine my delight when New Zealand cartoonist Burton Silver got a mention for his cartoon hedgehogs.There are many beautiful pictures of hedgehogs, hedgehog art, hedgehog toys etc.This book is the perfect gift for the hedgehog enthusiast in your life.Highly recommended.
So, yes, I love hedgehogs. :)I've previously read A Prickly Affair by Hugh Warwick, as well as a handful of articles on the animals by him. While A Prickly Affair focused primarily upon the habits of the European Hedgehog and the need for conservation, Hedgehog focuses far more upon the cultural significance of the animal. The book is organized into sections detailing the hedgehog in literature, in film, in music, in mythology, etc. In short, hedgehogs have been insinuated themselves into our lives in more ways that one might expect!This book is notable for showing a change in heart in Hugh Warwick as well. Previously the author viewed African Pygmy Hedgehogs in the pet trade in a derisive manner, and this book definitely softened that harsh edge. It wasn't an apology, per se, but rather a clarification of his perspective on the manner that was easy to understand. As African Pygmy Hedgehogs get more and more popular as pets (and more and more domesticated) the European Hedgehogs get pushed aside. The lessening of focus on the European Hedgehog has lead to a lessening in their conservation efforts, which is problematic in places where they're soon to be extinct in urban areas - such as England, Denmark, and Norway. Understand also that urban areas are where hedgehogs tend to thrive and you'll see why this is worrisome, and why The Disappearing Hedgehog is an apt name for one of their conservation efforts.While the future is still rather shaky for the European Hedgehog, this book is a wonderful testimony to the charm that they have and the love that they elicit from people. They're a truly wonderful species, and this book highlights that beautifully.
I didn't think it was possible, but this book made me love hedgehogs even more! It was recommended to me by my friend Hilary. Well-written, charming, and fascinating, it's a great source of information and taught me a lot I didn't know, particularly about European hedgehogs. I hope it inspires lots more people to care about the welfare of hedgehogs in particular (especially wild ones) and the environment in general. Fair warning to younger or more sensitive readers: it does contain some passing references to the various licentious activities of some less-than-moral fictional hedgehogs. Of course, hedgehogs generally are upstanding creatures of exceptional moral fiber.
Thanks to the internet/social media; trendy exotic animal/pet fads have seem to risen at an alarming rate. One of the animals of note during the past decade has been hedgehogs. This adorable, spiny ball of love has been intriguing countless folks; myself included (I plan to get one). Reaktion Books aims to showcase the social history of animals in the ‘Animal Series’ and invited Hugh Warwick to add to the list with, “Hedgehog”. Warwick combines a lightly scientific approach with a social history overview in order to break down “Hedgehog” into a topical view starting with an introduction to hedgehogs followed by features such as historical hedgehogs, literary hedgehogs, philosophical hedgehogs, commercial, etc. Warwick’s writing style is very accessible/readable eschewing scientific jargon and a heady angle for that of a more conversational tone and overview. On the downside, this results in “Hedgehog” overall reading like a college term paper. There is a bit of an ‘oomph’ missing from the piece. “Hedgehog” is predominately British-focused which makes sense based on the author and hedgehogs being prominent in the United Kingdom but this can also alienate from readers from other locales. Warwick’s extent of research in the scope of hedgehogs and all things related to the animal is clear and apparent. However, a deeper look at each topic would be welcome. That being said, the intent of Reaktion Books and Warwick is to provide a general view and in this way, “Hedgehog” is quite successful. Warwick maintains the pace and although naturally some chapters are stronger than other; the text as a whole flows well. “Hedgehog” is a victim of repetition both in terms of verbatim text/information and flow/presentation making the reading choppy at times and a bit tedious for the reader. The main problem with “Hedgehog” lays in the fact that it is not memorable enough. Even hedgehog fans will not find any thoroughly resonant information or that worth repeating. It feels like Warwick “held back”. Warwick supplements the pages of “Hedgehog” with a bounty of illustrations and photos which strengthens the text and adds to the merit of the work.The conclusion of “Hedgehog” looks briefly at the current state and future of these animals ending “Hedgehog” on a sold note. Warwick also includes a timeline, references, bibliography, and contact sheer for suitable organizations connected to hedgehogs. “Hedgehog” is a firm middle-ground, quick-read, solution for those readers seeking an introduction to hedgehogs or for staunch lovers of the litter critters to learn more and extend knowledge. Although “Hedgehog” isn’t a life-changing work; the entertainment value is well-balanced with a slight academic flair.
I was not sure what to expect (and am not a big fan of animal books) but found this book absorbing, highly entertaining, and, (quite unexpectedly) often laugh out loud funny. Hugh Warwick has a wide-ranging and constantly curious mind that makes him the perfect chronicler of this unusual and much loved animal, and he keeps it all moving along very well, moving between zoological authority and self deprecation, high art and low art, meticulous research and anecdote. So he starts with a learned discussion of the evolution of the spines and the taxonomic complexity of the order Eulipotyphla and ends with an extremely funny description of the International Hedgehog Olympic Games in Denver. And there is much poetry, ancient myth, song, art, stuffed toys, tattoos, Sonics, Tiggywinkles and even porn in between. This celebration of all things hedgehog makes the serious point- that wild populations are plumetting - all the more painful to hear, and I found his gentle and ultimately hopeful approach to this crisis far more moving than a maudlin lament. The book this is very well illustrated and the quality of the printing and photographs is high. My only real complaint is the pocket book size- chosen by Reaktion for its whole series on animals - is just too small for the illustrations and text and makes the book seem less thorough than it is...still, an unexpected delight.