Fifty Animals that Changed the Course of History (Fifty Things That Changed the Course of History)
The fascinating stories of the animals that changed civilizations.
Fifty Animals that Changed the Course of History is a beautifully presented guide to the animals that have had the greatest impact on human civilization. Entries are organized by scientific name, except for Homo sapiens, which is featured last.
The 50 animals include the horse, dog, rat, whale, reind...more
Where this book lost me a little was the editorializing. The writing was a little weak and a few phrases were repeated more than once. Also, recommending a creationist web site is not something I have come to expect ...more
Each animal is categorized as being either EDIBLE, MEDICINAL, COMMERCIAL, or PRACTICAL (often more than one), but the book itself is not organized around these categories. Or chronologically, geographically ...more
Most entries contain a short biological description, followed by the animal's impact on human civilization. The impact is material, abstract, or both. There are quite a few mythical stories, which illustrated in some respect the importance of the animal in people's lives. Of course, as each entry is only 4-6 pages long, there cannot be any details, and there aren't, but there are interesting tidbits of information and also pictures (I loved the "Leeches" container)! The entries I liked the most: ...more
Even so, it's a fun book and in my imagination, I would love to use it as a companion text in a 5th-grade world history class (or whatever they have, now, that substitutes for world history). I felt the book has the potential to engage student ...more
Under the chapter on "mosquitoes" for instance, no mention at all is made of dengue fever, which has killed - and is still killing - people in Southeast Asia mainly. Instead, the author keeps going on about the West Nile virus. And no mention at all is made of the Culex and Aedes mosquitoes, which are major vectors.
Despite lowe ...more
On the downside, I felt some disagreement with the author in certain areas, but do not have enough animal knowledge to truly argue my thoughts. Also, the illustrations weren't captioned...it would've been interesting to understand them better.