Animals and Inequality in the Ancient World

edited by Benjamin S. Arbuckle and Sue Ann McCarty

Hardcover Price $74.00
Ebook Price Open Access

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"I know of no other edited volume in zooarchaeology that has this breadth of coverage, geographically, temporally, and topically. . . . A very important contribution to the field."
—Elizabeth Scott, Illinois State University

"Animals and Inequality makes a significant contribution to the discipline both as a scholarly interpretation of the social significance of animals and as a demonstration that it is possible to study that significance while remaining grounded in reliable data." 

American Antiquity

"[I] heartily recommend this volume to anyone who would like to read interesting and unusual case studies that have been unpacked by archaeologists from various corners of the globe and strata of human history. Those who study human-animal-environmental relationships or who are interested in acquiring a new lens through which to view social inequality will find it well worth their time and it will open up new challenges for their own research projects."

Anthropology News

"[Animals and Inequality] will become a standard reference for those wishing to understand the contribution of zooarchaeology to the study of social inequality. . . . an excellent book, one which reads as a powerful statement about the potential of animal studies to illuminate past societies."

Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and Heritage Studies

"The chapters in this excellent​ ​volume demonstrate that our entanglement with nonhuman animals has a complex​ ​(pre)history that we’re only now beginning to unravel.​"

Journal of Anthropological Research

Copy of ku mark RGB large Thanks to the support of libraries working with Knowledge Unlatched, a collaborative initiative designed to make high-quality books open access for the public good, free electronic versions of this title are also available.


Animals and Inequality in the Ancient World explores the current trends in the social archaeology of human-animal relationships, focusing on the ways in which animals are used to structure, create, support, and even deconstruct social inequalities.

The authors provide a global range of case studies from both New and Old World archaeology—royal Aztec dog burial, the monumental horse tombs of Central Asia, and the ceremonial macaw cages of ancient Mexico among them. They explore the complex relationships between people and animals in social, economic, political, and ritual contexts, incorporating animal remains from archaeological sites with artifacts, texts, and iconography to develop their interpretations.

Animals and Inequality in the Ancient World presents new data and interpretations that reveal the role of animals, their products, and their symbolism in structuring social inequalities in the ancient world. The volume will be of interest to archaeologists, especially zooarchaeologists, and classical scholars of pre-modern civilizations and societies.

Contributors: Alejandra Aguirre Molina, Benjamin S. Arbuckle, Levent Atici, Douglas V. Campana, Roderick Campbell, Ximena Chá­vez Balderas, Pam J. Crabtree, Susan D. deFrance, Kitty F. Emery, Abigail Holeman, H. Edwin Jackson, Leonardo López Lujá­n, Michael MacKinnon, Arkadiusz Marciniak, Sue Ann McCarty, Neil L. Norman, Gilberto Perez, Bernardo Rodriguez, William A. Saturno, Ashley E. Sharpe, Nawa Sugiyama, Charlotte K. Sunseri, Naomi Sykes, Fabiola Torres, Raul Valadez, Norma Valentin Maldonado, Adam S. Watson, Joshua Wright, Belem Zuniga-Arelleno


Benjamin S. Arbuckle is professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a zooarchaeologist whose research focuses on human-animal interactions in ancient Anatolia (modern Turkey). He is coeditor of Animals and Inequality in the Ancient World.

Sue Ann McCarty is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Virginia.

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  • Hardcover Price: $74.00
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-60732-285-6
  • Ebook Price: Open Access
  • EISBN: 978-1-60732-286-3
  • Publication Month: January
  • Publication Year: 2015
  • Pages: 400
  • Illustrations: 27 b&w photographs, 47 line drawings, 12 maps, 17 tables
  • Discount Type: Short
  • Author: edited by Benjamin S. Arbuckle and Sue Ann McCarty
  • ECommerce Code: 978-1-60732-285-6
  • Get Permissions: Get Permission

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