Birds and Us: A 12,000-Year History from Cave Art to Conservation

Princeton Univ. Aug. 2022. 496p. ISBN 9780691239927. $29.95. NAT HIST
Award-winning ornithologist Birkhead (The Most Perfect Thing: Inside [and Outside] a Bird’s Egg) has written nearly a dozen books on birds. This title examines how humans have interacted with birds throughout history through the lens of artwork. Birkhead takes an engaging look at the art of birds from Paleolithic times to the present, looking at the ways humans have viewed birds as gods, food, commodities, adornment, inspiration for flight, and finally, as creatures to be protected (possibly encouraged by the popularity of bird-watching). Along the way, Birkhead introduces readers to an array of explorers, archeologists, conservationists, natural historians, and artists who have been inspired by birds and bird art. He also includes anecdotes from his own career in ornithology.
VERDICT Includes a list of birds mentioned, extensive notes and bibliography, and an excellent index. An enjoyable book for those interested in birds or art.
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