The 1978 classic on man and nature returns in this special twenty-fifth-anniversary edition, featuring a new afterword that assesses how far we’ve advanced in our understanding of other creatures and our efforts to conserve the environment.
Humankind's relationship with the wolf is the sum of a spectrum of responses ranging from fear to admiration and affection. Lopez’s classic, careful study won praise from a wide range of reviewers, became a finalist for the National Book award, and forever improved the way books on wild animals are written. Of Wolves and Men explores the uneasy interaction between wolves and civilization over the centuries, and the wolf's prominence in our thoughts about wild creatures. Drawing upon an impressive array of literature, history, science, and mythology as well as extensive personal experience with captive and free-ranging wolves, Lopez argues for the wolf's preservation and immerses the reader in its sensory world, creating a compelling portrait of the wolf both as a real animal and as imagined by different kinds of men. A scientist might perceive the wolf as defined by research data, while an Eskimo hunter sees a family provider much like himself. For many Native Americans the wolf is also a spiritual symbol, a respected animal that can strengthen the individual and the community. With irresistible charm and elegance, Of Wolves and Men celebrates careful scientific fieldwork, dispels folklore that has enabled the Western mind to demonize wolves, explains myths, and honors indigenous traditions, allowing us to understand how this remarkable animal has become so prominent for so long in the human heart.
About the Author
Barry Lopez's books include Light Action in the Caribbean (stories), About This Life (essays and memoir), the novella-length fable Crow and Weasel, and Arctic Dreams (nonfiction), for which he received the National Book Award. He has traveled extensively in remote regions of the world, and his work has been widely translated and anthologized. He is a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim, Lannan, and National Science foundations; the Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; the John Burroughs and John Hay medals; and other honors. He lives in rural western Oregon.