This book demonstrates how horse breeding is entwined with human societies and identities. It explores issues of lineage, purity, and status by exploring interconnections between animals and humans.

The quest for purity in equine breed reflects and evolves alongside human subjectivity shaped by categories of race, gender, class, region, and nation. Focusing on various horse breeds, from the Chincoteague Pony to Brazilian Crioulo and the Arabian horse, each chapter in this collection considers how human and animal identities are shaped by practices of breeding and categorizing domesticated animals.

Bringing together different historical, geographical, and disciplinary perspectives, this book will appeal to academics, as well as undergraduate and postgraduate students, in the fields of human-animal studies, sociology, environmental studies, cultural studies, history, and literature.

chapter |9 pages

Horse breeds


part I|56 pages

Before breed

chapter 1|14 pages

Defining “race” in the Spanish horse

The breeding program of King Philip II

chapter 3|17 pages

Manufacturing the horse

Understandings of inheritance in the long eighteenth century

part II|70 pages

Breed and national/regional identity

chapter 6|17 pages

Crioulos e crioulistas

Southern Brazilian equestrian culture in a changing world 1

chapter 7|16 pages

Bois y cobs 1

The place of autochthonous horses in rural Welsh cultural identity

part III|56 pages

Wild horses and the politics of breed

chapter 8|20 pages

Inventing the wild horse

The manmade history of the Takhi and Tarpan from 1828–2018

chapter 10|16 pages

Wild at heart

The Chincoteague Pony and the paradox of feral “breed”

part IV|58 pages

Purity and evolution

chapter 11|18 pages

The transition from type to breed

Draft horses and purebred breeding in the international American market, 1870–1910

chapter 12|21 pages

The ideal horse

Politics and practices of Knabstrupper breeding