White Collies, Beauty or Genetic Defect

White Collies, Beauty or Genetic Defect This article explores the relationship between standards of beauty and genetic knowledge in regulations for the breeding of nonhuman animals. Collie breeding and views concerning the coat color white, in North America and Britain between 1870 and the present, illustrate how advances in dog coat genetics did little to alter perceptions concerning beauty and/or quality held in the different countries. Today, North American Collie breeders consider white coats to be desirable. Modern British breeders see these coats as unacceptable. Breed standards that support practices have not changed to reflect a better understanding of genetics. An assessment of how attitudes to white Collies arose, and why these views differed between North America and Britain, illustrates how entrenched cultural perceptions concerning beauty/quality can be in the face of information that undermines their validity. The story introduces a larger topic: how can change be introduced in light of the complicated beauty/science axis? http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Society & Animals Brill

White Collies, Beauty or Genetic Defect

Society & Animals : 17 – Feb 20, 2018

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1063-1119
eISSN
1568-5306
D.O.I.
10.1163/15685306-12341487
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article explores the relationship between standards of beauty and genetic knowledge in regulations for the breeding of nonhuman animals. Collie breeding and views concerning the coat color white, in North America and Britain between 1870 and the present, illustrate how advances in dog coat genetics did little to alter perceptions concerning beauty and/or quality held in the different countries. Today, North American Collie breeders consider white coats to be desirable. Modern British breeders see these coats as unacceptable. Breed standards that support practices have not changed to reflect a better understanding of genetics. An assessment of how attitudes to white Collies arose, and why these views differed between North America and Britain, illustrates how entrenched cultural perceptions concerning beauty/quality can be in the face of information that undermines their validity. The story introduces a larger topic: how can change be introduced in light of the complicated beauty/science axis?

Journal

Society & AnimalsBrill

Published: Feb 20, 2018

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