In the Company of Crows and Ravens

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Yale University Press, 2007 - Nature - 384 pages
44 Reviews
From the cave walls at Lascaux to the last painting by Van Gogh, from the works of Shakespeare to those of Mark Twain, there is clear evidence that crows and ravens influence human culture. Yet this influence is not unidirectional, say the authors  of this fascinating book: people profoundly influence crow culture, ecology, and evolution as well. Examining the often surprising ways that crows and humans interact, John Marzluff and Tony Angell contend that those interactions reflect a process of "cultural coevolution." They offer a challenging new view of the human-crow dynamic--a view that may change our thinking not only about crows but also about ourselves.

Featuring more than 100 original drawings, the book takes a close look at the influences people have had on the lives of crows throughout history and at the significant ways crows have altered human lives. In the Company of Crows and Ravens illuminates the entwined histories of crows and people and concludes with an intriguing discussion of the crow-human relationship and how our attitudes toward crows may affect our cultural trajectory. As the authors state in their preface: "Crows and people share similar traits and social strategies. To a surprising extent, to know the crow is to know ourselves."


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And, hey, lots of good pictures... - Goodreads
Not dazzling writing, but some great stories. - Goodreads
Too bad, because the premise is catchy. - Goodreads
I was attracted to Tony Angell's illustrations. - Goodreads
Lots of research and examples of work with crows cited. - Goodreads

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Ma_Washigeri - LibraryThing

And another half star. Great book with lovely pictures but a bit of a dry read so maybe better to dip into rather than read cover to cover as I did (albeit slowly). Could use more imagination with the structure of the book - the content was very interesting. Read full review

Review: In the Company of Crows and Ravens

User Review  - Colin Thompson - Goodreads

Really enjoyed this. Interesting and warm insights into a remarkable species. Read full review


ONE Cultural Connections
TWO A Crow Is a Crow or Is It?
THREE Intertwined Ecologies and Mutual Destinies
FOUR Inspiration for Legend Literature Art and Language
FIVE The Social Customs and Culture of Crows
SIX Communication and Culture
SEVEN Reaping What We Sow
EIGHT Centering the Balance
NINE Future Interactions
APPENDIX ONE Making Observations to Learn More
APPENDIX TWO Childrens Books That Involve Crows and Ravens

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About the author (2007)

JOHN M. MARZLUFF is Denman Professor of Sustainable Resource Sciences and professor of wildlife science, College of Forest Resources, University of Washington. TONY ANGELL is an artist and writer living in Seattle, Washington. Together the authors combine more than 60 years of scientific and artistic fascination with crows and their bird relatives.

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