The Abominable Pig by Marvin Harris Essay

637 Words 3 Pages
The Abominable Pig by Marvin Harris

Is it possible that the almighty God is wrong? The bible explicitly states, in no questionable terms that whatever is of the hoof and is cloven footed and chews the cud among animals, you may eat. Obviously, the pig has fallen short of the statement’s requirements, hence the reason why, Marvin Harris author of the article “The Abominable Pig,” has opted to explore the reasons why this is the case as his central argument. Harris does not seek to completely refute this theory; in fact, even though he pinpoints certain flaws in the biblical proclamation, he scrutinizes the reasons why God has chosen to isolate this particular animal, for it is no more a carrier of disease than any other. Harris
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However, Harris immediately puts forth his evidence as to why this is the case. Pigs have a tendency to wallow in mud not because they are unclean but because of a biological default that forces them to behave in this manner. Their bodies do not possess the sweat glands that are needed to aid in the regulation of body temperature during extremely hot weather to provide them with some form of cooling down. According to Harris’ research he discovered that pig wallow in mud because the moisture it provides, works well as artificial shade, and sometimes if mud is not immediately available then the alternative would be their excrements, which unfortunately have given the pig its bad reputation. Next, Harris argues that the trichinosis theory, was refuted based on the nineteenth century discovery that undercooked pork is bad for the health not pork itself. In fact he asserts, “that there is absolutely nothing exceptional about pork as a source of human disease. All domestic animals are potentially hazardous to human health.” One becomes hard pressed not to agree because the logic behind his arguments is quite rational and undisputable. He illustrates that each and every animal, those that are wholesome and those that are unclean, each posses some flaw, in terms of their disease carrying ability. Equally important, he challenges the authenticity of the
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