In this Book

University of Minnesota Press
summary

The Western approach to nature has always operated under both spiritual and scientific views. While Christianity decrees that human beings have dominion over nature, evolutionary biology teaches us that we are but highly adapted animals among a biological network of millions of other species. What is our proper relationship to wild animals-and what is our responsibility to them?

In The Bullhead Queen, Sue Leaf exemplifies the moral aspect of humans to nature through a collection of engaging meditations on the places she sees every day on Pioneer Lake in east-central Minnesota. Reflecting on the birds she peers at through binoculars and the Lutheran church that anchors the lake's southern shore, Leaf contemplates how her relationship to nature has been colored by the Christian theology of her childhood. Acknowledging the influence of the church on her view of the natural world, she follows the liturgical calendar as a thread, chronicling the change of seasons over the year.

Leaf considers the results of the assumption that nature is ours to use: we continue to fish, trap, and hunt animals whose populations are ghosts of their former selves and produce mounting environmental pressures on their habitats. Observing the ways in which the heavy hand of human beings has changed the landscape of Pioneer Lake, and many others like it, she also rejoices in the ways in which the lakes remain wild and exuberant, influencing the lives of all who encounter them.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. i-iv
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. vii-x
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xi-xii
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  1. Waiting at Advent
  2. pp. 1-5
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  1. Counting at Christmas
  2. pp. 6-17
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  1. Wild Ice
  2. pp. 18-24
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  1. Christmas Hockey
  2. pp. 25-27
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  1. Morning Star
  2. pp. 28-34
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  1. Geese on the Ice
  2. pp. 35-42
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  1. Passing the Salt
  2. pp. 43-51
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  1. Winter Geography
  2. pp. 52-56
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  1. Lengthening
  2. pp. 57-60
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  1. Owl Invasion
  2. pp. 61-69
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  1. What Are Animals For?
  2. pp. 70-79
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  1. Ever Living Fire
  2. pp. 80-87
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  1. Winged Wonder
  2. pp. 88-94
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  1. The Rites of Spring
  2. pp. 95-102
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  1. The Nest Box War
  2. pp. 103-110
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  1. Conspiracy
  2. pp. 111-117
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  1. Illumined Courtship
  2. pp. 118-122
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  1. The Bullhead Queen
  2. pp. 123-127
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  1. Skiing at Flamin’ Feet
  2. pp. 128-136
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  1. The Green Season
  2. pp. 137-144
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  1. Rowing the Mutant Canoe
  2. pp. 145-150
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  1. Ordinary Time
  2. pp. 151-160
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  1. Nighthawk Day
  2. pp. 161-166
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  1. Via Dolorosa
  2. pp. 167-173
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  1. Saints at Work, Saints at Rest
  2. pp. 174-182
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  1. Everyone a King
  2. pp. 183-192
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  1. About the Author
  2. pp. 193-193
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