PIGS: A Troughful of Treasures by Sarah & Lucinda Vardey Bowman

PIGS: A Troughful of Treasures

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A ""pigpourri,"" as the authors head one column, of pig lore and pig appreciation, with synopses and/or excerpts from myths, rhymes, stories, and whatnot from Homer to Flanders-and-Swann. Among the better-known sources are Orwell (a 250-word summary of Animal Farm), E. B. White (his own account, in toto, of the death of a pig on his farm), Lewis Carroll, Mary Raynor (the picture book Mr. and Mrs. Pig's Evening Out), and P. G. Wodehouse. Readers learn of ancient medieval boar hunts, of a white sow cult ""headed"" by Demeter, of pig-sticking among the British in India, and of the excessive ""piggy love"" practiced by Mating tribespeople in New Guinea. The authors' contribution consists of a running continuity replete with expressions of their own pig love: ""It is hard to determine exactly why pigs were not always sanctified,"" they muse at one point; at another they suggest that the luscious nudes of Botticelli, Rubens, and Renoir reveal a ""subconscious attraction for the pig."" To a child's natural question about eating the object of our affection, they answer, with those Mating tribes as examples, that ""the ultimate expression of your affinity may be to eat your pig."" Illustrated with old prints, paintings, and book illustrations, this is quirkier and cornier than Scott and Sweet's The Book of the Pig--but a more likely browsers' temptation.

Pub Date: Oct. 2nd, 1982
Publisher: Macmillan