[2000] The animals came dancing

  title={The Animals Came Dancing: Native American Sacred Ecology and Animal Kinship},
  author={Harrod, H.L.},
  series={The Animals Came Dancing: Native American Sacred Ecology and Animal Kinship},
  publisher={University of Arizona Press}

In openlibrary.

My highlights:

Animals as cultural artifacts, useful for human aesthetic or recreational needs.

Nutrition and food consumption are understood more in terms of vitamins, calorie intake, and fat content. The living animal as well as the blood, entrails, and hair out of which meat products emerge are matters far from the consciousness and practical experience of most people, especially those who live completely within the web of an urban culture.

It appears that Northern Plains peoples believed that the ritual enactment embodied transcendent realities and made them manifest in the everyday world.

What most people in our society experience is a food culture that includes plants and animals, to be sure. But their deeper status as sources is obscured by their transformation into cultural artifacts whose meaning is almost totally disassociated from their status as living beings. The food symbols that permeate these rituals and give them meaning are largely disconnected from their sources in the natural world.

If all life other than the human is domesticated, drawn into human culture to be defined and experienced only as cultural artifacts, then the consequence of such a development would be the emergence of a “wild” human-dangerously spiritually diminished, feeding upon life without reflective awareness, destroying life without benefit of the transcendence of conscience.