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versão impressa ISSN 0104-9313versão On-line ISSN 1678-4944


KULICK, Don. Animais gordos e a dissolução da fronteira entre as espécies. Mana [online]. 2009, vol.15, n.2, pp.481-508. ISSN 0104-9313.

For many people, fat pets used to be cute, funny and adorable, and for some people fat pets (especially fat cats) still are: the Garfield comics, about an overweight, lazy cat, sell well, there are websites and books devoted to extolling the beauty and allure of fat cats, and children are socialized, through phonics readers with titles like Fat Cat on a Mat, to associate the pleasure of reading with the cuteness of round pets. All of this, however, is changing. We are witnessing the transformation of pet obesity from a trivial phenomenon or an idiosyncratic aesthetic preference into a social problem - one that increasingly mobilizes the mass media, public opinion and a wide variety of experts, and the intervention of state apparatuses like the courts and the police. This article discusses the ways in which obesity has crossed the species boundary. It reviews the evidence circulated to justify the increasingly common - and increasingly shrill - claims that we are in the midst of an "epidemic" of pet obesity (some claims assert that as many as 60% of all pets are overweight or obese) and it discusses the source and assesses the reliability of that evidence. It examines how pet obesity is presented in the mass media and by charitable organizations like Pet Club UK or the RSPCA. It also offers some thoughts about what current concerns about pet obesity can tell us about the social, cultural, medical, historical, economic, emotional and subjective dimensions of obesity more generally.

Palavras-chave : Pets; Controlling obesity; Self-identification processes; Food industry; Comparative sociology.

        · resumo em Português     · texto em Português     · Português ( pdf )


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