Disreputable Animals. A Bestiary of Human Fears

Disreputable Animals. A Bestiary of Human Fears

238 pages

Hardcover with illustrations

Genre: Humanities, Nature, Nonfiction
Unpopular animals and a rousing exploration of human fears

Whether it is the fear of snakes, the loathing of vultures or the disgust of spiders – the human relationship to many animals is characterized by deep rejection. Their origins go back to mythical prehistoric times, when man believed he had renounced the animal world, not least through storytelling and fable.
Stephan Wunsch portrays ten of these ill-named, even disreputable animals. His forays lead him into the shadowy realm of malicious natural history – and into the abysses of the human psyche. For a bestiary of disreputable animals is a catalog of our fears, a mirror of our inadequacies, a survey of open wounds – in short, a cryptic and hilarious study of human nature, from vulture to false snake, from deceitful hyena to vampiric bat.


"Every animal, especially the dubious and obscure, is a challenge to the human mind and to the human imagination."

German title: Verrufene Tiere - Ein Bestiarium menschlicher Ängste
ISBN: 978-3-7518-4000-2
Publisher: Matthes & Seitz Berlin
Publication date: 2023
Series: Naturkunden Vol. 097



Stephan Wunsch, born in 1968, studied philosophy and literature. He has been working as a puppeteer, figure designer and director in Aachen since 2002. Projects about bird creatures, the Cambrian and the deep sea are a focus of his work.