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Bat
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Tessa Laird
Bat by Tessa Laird at Abbey's Bookshop,

Bat

Tessa Laird


9781780238944

Reaktion Books


Animals & society;
Mathematics & Sciences;
Wildlife: mammals


Paperback

224 pages

$24.99
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Bats have been misunderstood and maligned in the West for centuries. Unfair associations with demons have seen their leathery wings adorn numerous evil characters, from the Devil to Bram Stoker's Dracula. But these amazing animals are ecological superheroes. Nectar-feeding bats pollinate important crops like agave; fruit-eating bats disperse seeds and encourage reforestation; and insect-eating bats keep down mosquito populations and other pests, saving agricultural industries billions of dollars. Ranging from the size of a bumblebee to those with a wingspan the length of an adult human, they are the only mammals possessing true flight and are found on all continents except Antarctica.

In Bat Tessa Laird challenges preconceptions about these amazing animals, combining fascinating facts of bat biology with engaging portrayals of bats in mythology, literature, film, popular culture, poetry, and contemporary art. She also provides a sobering reminder of the risks bats face worldwide, from heatwaves and human harassment to wind turbines and disease. Illustrated with incredible photographs and artistic representations of bats from many different cultures and eras, this celebration of bats contains much to enthral converts and sceptics alike.

By:   Tessa Laird
Imprint:   Reaktion Books
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 190mm,  Width: 135mm, 
ISBN:   9781780238944
ISBN 10:   1780238940
Series:   Animal Series
Pages:   224
Publication Date:   May 2018
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Tessa Laird is Lecturer in Critical and Theoretical Studies at the School of Art, Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne. Tessa was a noted New Zealand art critic for over twenty years, where she founded two important art magazines in the 1990s, Monica Reviews Art and LOG Illustrated. Her book A Rainbow Reader appeared in 2013.


Laird's dazzling study takes in everything from Colombian breast plates to Chinese matchboxes, not to mention the Australian newsreader who raised an orphaned flying fox. --Times Higher Education Bat is an interesting dissection of the many different sides of bats, from both a biological and a cultural view point. The book is full of intriguing, bizarre, and astonishing facts about bats, from biology, pop culture, mythology, literature, and art. The main focus is on the interaction of bats and human life--the way they are portrayed within different cultures, the effect that has on the cultural opinion, and what that means for their protection in the law or lack thereof. . . . Bat is a celebration, showing the positive side of bats and uncovering many of the mysteries they have been shrouded in for so long. --BTO News Did you know that the collective noun for bats is a 'cloud, ' or that in the first scientific classification of mammals, bats were placed close to humans because, like us, they have two nipples? The book Bat . . . is full of similar tidbits that you will want to share with others. It is also engrossing, eloquent, and beautifully illustrated. Bat contains hundreds of delightful bat facts, but they are so grounded in context that the whole is much more than the sum of its parts. One cannot help but become intrigued and eventually transformed. I know I will never look at bats the same way again. --Conversation

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