Seeing the Animal Whole

And Why It Matters

Craig Holdrege

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Quick Look

  • A call to think about animals and nature in a new way
  • Presents nine vivid portraits of different animals, exploring their characteristics in detail to understand the animal as a whole
  • An inspirational guide which argues that changing the way we think about nature could help us improve the health of the planet

Presents an insightful and fresh way of looking at animals and nature in order to highlight how we can learn and grow from them and ultimately, improve the health of our planet.

254 x 178 mm
Lindisfarne Books
Philosophy of the Natural World
48 colour and 60 b/w illustrations
352 pages
Publication date:
13 May 2021


Every animal on earth has its own unique character—the slow sloth, the burrowing mole, the towering giraffe, the huge but flexible elephant. In nine vivid portrayals of different animals, Craig Holdrege shows how an animal's features are interconnected and reveal the animal as a whole.

This insightful book presents readers with a fresh view of animals and nature by addressing each animal individually and succinctly asking, ‘who are you?’. This leads to a ground-breaking understanding of animal development and evolution as creative processes in which the animals are active participants. These revelations can help us find a way to learn from nature, rather than work against it, in order to improve the health of the planet in the future.

An insightful and inspiring guide which encourages readers to change the way they think about animals, in order to understand how we can learn and grow from them.


Dr Craig Holdrege is co-founder and director of The Nature Institute in New York ( He is deeply interested in the interconnected nature of things and how we can understand life in truly living ways as a basis for responsible human action. He has written numerous articles, monographs, and books, including Thinking Like a Plant and The Giraffe's Long Neck. He teaches and lectures worldwide.

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