Cover for HOBGOOD-OSTER: Holy Dogs and Asses: Animals in the Christian Tradition. Click for larger image

Holy Dogs and Asses

Animals in the Christian Tradition

Recognizing animals in the Christian tradition

Analysis of animals in the history of the Christian tradition has been exclusively symbolic, but Laura Hobgood-Oster utilizes the feminist perspective in her examination of the impact of animal presence. In challenging the metaphoric reading of animals that reinforces human superiority and dominance, Holy Dogs and Asses underscores animal agency.

Creatures play various active roles, which Hobgood-Oster categorizes as exemplars of piety, sources of revelation, saintly martyrs, and the primary other in an intimate relationship. Drawing from rich oral histories, legends, artwork, and popular stories of saints, this study directs our attention to the animal body--also a central concern of Christian theology and feminist criticism. Hobgood-Oster invites the reader to venture beyond the exclusive symbolic nature of animals in the Christian tradition to an awareness that we can know ourselves more fully by reference to the animal.


"A welcome contribution to the growing field of animals and religion. . . . Recommended."--Choice

“Raises some important theological and historical questions about the role of animals in the Christian tradition, questions that encourage thoughtful reflection among people of faith.”--Religious Studies Review

"A pioneering study."--Church History

"Laura Hobgood-Oster's incisive contribution to the emerging field of 'religion and animals' is at once scholarly and caring--this remarkable volume models for all of us how valuable new works on the issue of nonhumans in the Christian tradition can be."--Paul F. Waldau, director of the Center for Animals and Public Policy, Tufts University, and coeditor of A Communion of Subjects: Animals in Religion, Science, and Ethics

"This study persuasively analyzes popular visual images in an effort to recover the lost significance of animals in Christian iconography. Hobgood-Oster's search in Christian history for a realization of the animal as more than mere sacred symbol is very important."--Belden C. Lane, Theological Studies, Saint Louis University


Laura Hobgood-Oster is the Elizabeth Root Paden Chair in Religion at Southwestern University, Georgetown, Texas, and author of "She Glanceth from Earth to Heaven": The Phenomenon of Love Mysticism among Women in Antebellum Virginia and Maryland.

To order online:
//www.press.uillinois.edu/books/catalog/76nkr2aq9780252032134.html

To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)

Related Titles

previous book next book
Without a Tear - Cover
Without a Tear

Our Tragic Relationship with Animals

Mark H. Bernstein

Vardis Fisher - Cover
Vardis Fisher

A Mormon Novelist

Michael Austin

The Cashaway Psalmody - Cover
The Cashaway Psalmody

Transatlantic Religion and Music in Colonial Carolina

Stephen A. Marini

Animals on the Agenda - Cover
Animals on the Agenda

Questions about Animals for Theology and Ethics

Edited by Andrew Linzey and Dorothy Yamamoto

Prophetic Authority - Cover
Prophetic Authority

Democratic Hierarchy and the Mormon Priesthood

Michael Hubbard MacKay

Pacific Apostle - Cover
Pacific Apostle

The 1920-21 Diary of David O. McKay in the Latter-day Saint Island Missions

David O. McKay Edited by Reid L. Neilson and Carson V. Teuscher

Killing Animals - Cover
Killing Animals

The Animal Studies Group

Animal Theology - Cover
Animal Theology

Andrew Linzey

America’s Religious Crossroads - Cover
America’s Religious Crossroads

Faith and Community in the Emerging Midwest

Stephen T. Kissel

Thunder from the Right - Cover
Thunder from the Right

Ezra Taft Benson in Mormonism and Politics

Edited by Matthew L. Harris

The Ethics of Diet - Cover
The Ethics of Diet

A Catena of Authorities Deprecatory of the Practice of Flesh-Eating

Howard Williams

The Spirit of Soul Food - Cover
The Spirit of Soul Food

Race, Faith, and Food Justice

Christopher Carter

Chicago Católico - Cover
Chicago Católico

Making Catholic Parishes Mexican

Deborah E. Kanter

Sister Species - Cover
Sister Species

Women, Animals, and Social Justice

Edited by Lisa Kemmerer

Owen Lovejoy and the Coalition for Equality - Cover
Owen Lovejoy and the Coalition for Equality

Clergy, African Americans, and Women United for Abolition

Jane Ann Moore and William F. Moore

Restless Pilgrim - Cover
Restless Pilgrim

Andrew Jenson’s Quest for Latter-day Saint History

Reid L. Neilson and Scott D. Marianno

Brutal - Cover
Brutal

Manhood and the Exploitation of Animals

Brian Luke