Fox Book Summary By Martin Wallen

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Fox (2006) is an amazing book that dives into the fascinating animal we all know as the fox.

Much more than a basic biological definition, the authors look at how foxes have inspired stories and myths in various cultures around the world.

As you take this journey with them, you'll learn about how these creatures continue to influence our language and culture.

Moreover, you'll gain insight into the mysterious nature of foxes and discover why they are so beloved by people all around the globe.

Fox Book

Book Name: Fox (The Cultural History of this Mystical Animal)

Author(s): Martin Wallen

Rating: 4.4/5

Reading Time: 10 Minutes

Categories: Nature & the Environment

Author Bio

Martin Wallen is an esteemed professor of English at Oklahoma State University, and a notable expert on culture's relationship with animals - particularly dogs and foxes.

In 2004, Professor Wallen wrote the book City of Health, Fields of Disease; a significant work that has been praised by critics since its release.

Professor Wallen is a well-respected scholar who has done extensive research into animal behavior and the role they play in our life and society.

He is dedicated to exploring this important topic through his books, lectures and other media appearances - making him a trustworthy authority for anyone in search of reliable information about these fascinating creatures.

Exploring The Stories That Shape Our Perception Of Foxes

Perception Of Foxes

Step into the mysterious world of the fox.

We all may have heard stories about this small and fragile creature, but in many cultures, traditons involving foxes are quite different from our own.

Discover what Aristotle thought of them and learn what ties them to Zorro!

Entering this wonderful world filled with legends can be eye-opening and fascinating.

Do you want to dive deeper in the tales about these sly animals? Learn about how people try to avoid talking on the phone with a fox-spirit and enjoy stories that may reshape your knowledge abotu foxes.

From childhood tales of cleverness to a more adult look at age-old traditions, Fox Book Summary is an interesting and informative way to discover more about these cunning animals.

Aristotle’S Inferior View Of The Fox Helped Obscure Our Appreciation For Its Versatility And Resilience

Aristotle was the first Westerner to undertake a scientific effort to classify the fox, grouping it into his “cold and earthy” category alongside other bony and hairy creatures.

However, while Aristotle’s classification served as a starting point for thinking about foxes, centuries later a more accurate and scientifically sound description of the creature emerged.

In the eighteenth century during the Enlightenment, naturalists began venturing outside their libraries and exploring new habitats around the world.

They discovered that not only were there multiple species of foxes but also that these animals can be wonderfully versatile and adaptable to different environments.

As such, the taxonomy for foxes changed from Aristotle’s cold-earthy categorization to a more objective biological family – Canidae – which also includes dogs, wolves and jackals.

Therefore, though Aristotle was credited with being one of the earliest attempts to catalog this animal species, modern scientists have reclassified it using what we now know to be much more scientific descriptions.

The Many Ways That Different Cultures Have Interpreted The Fox Symbolically


Traditional stories depict foxes as either cunning and wicked, travelers between two worlds, or fertility symbols.

In Christian stories, for example, the fox is usually portrayed as a symbol of deceit and wickedness.

Ancient Greek myths describe the never-ending fight between Teumessian, a fox that wreaked havoc in Thebes, and Laelaps, the only powerful dog able to keep it at bay.

In some cultures, such as Siberia, foxes are associated with spiritual guidance and shapeshifting abilities.

They can lead shamans down paths that are normally not accessible to people.

In Asian culture there is a belief that the fox has spirit form which it changes into in order to influence people’s lives even swaying them into having sexual relations.

Fertility too is often associated with the red fur of foxes – they have been used in Celtic rituals in hopes their sacrifice will help crops grow.

There is also an old Japanese myth which gives the mushroom “Kitsune-no-chimpo” its name – literally translating to “fox’s penis”.

Thus we can safely assume the tail of this small animal has been seen many times taken for a phallic shape!

The Rise And Fall Of Fox Hunting And The Impact On Fur In Britain

Fox Hunting

In some Western cultures, hunting foxes and killing them for their fur has been a part of life for centuries.

Specifically, foxes have traditionally been hunted in Britain as a sport of the privileged elite.

This is a tradition that dates back to 1753 and was mainly carried out by high society members who sought to prove their prowess in such a prestigious activity.

The brutal hunt not only gave way to an entire industry for fur production, but also helped determine what it meant to be “manly” in those societies at the time—shifting from physical strength to moral integrity.

Unfortunately, this violent relationship with foxes largely continued even when it was banned outside of hunts in the 19th century; red and Arctic foxes had become so widely hunted they were being imported into Europe while breeders held captive foxes in Canada to keep up with demand.

By 1925, the price of a fur coat made out of Arctic Fox jumped as much as $2,800 on its way from Alaska to London.

The Cunning And Enduring Influence Of The Fox On Our Culture

The influence of the fox has been lasting and pervasive in our language and modern stories.

From being used to begin a telephone conversation by saying “moshi moshi” in Japan to the popular character of Zorro in Spanish culture, examples abound in which the fox plays a major role.

Korea even had the hit show Gumiho, which tells a romance story revolving around a teenage boy and fox-spirit girl.

This only serves to highlight how strong of an influence the fox has had on contemporary entertainment.

Foxy references can also be heard frequently throughout speech today, as our ancestors liked to compare creatures with reddish fur or triangular faces with pointed ears to the sly creature itself.

Infamously, people have also earned nicknames for their sneaky behavior that allude to that of a fox’s—Erwin Rommel was nicknamed “Desert Fox” due to his repeated escapes from defeat during World War II, while Jimi Hendrix’s song “Foxy Lady” is one of his most recognizable hits showcasing sexual prowess and thrill of the hunt.

All this goes to show that the reverence and mystery surrounding this animal is not lost on us!

We still see these influences in our culture today, proving its ability to withstand time is unrivaled.

Wrap Up

Overall, the book “The Fox” has revealed that the fox is a mysterious and fascinating animal that has been woven into our cultures over the years.

Through various cultural interpretations, we can understand the different qualities we assign to this creature – from cowardice and deceitfulness to intelligence and cunning.

Moreover, through its folklore portrayal as a shapeshifter or spirit guide to other realms, the fox serves as a powerful symbol for mystery and hidden knowledge.

All in all, this book has left us with plenty of new discoveries about the fox’s grand history.

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

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