“Arctic Fox: Life at the Top of the World”

With global warming in the public eye, a lot more attention has been given to the life that will be affected by it. Most experts believe that climate change is adversely affecting the polar regions more quickly than the rest of the world. Temperatures there have risen more than in the temperate or tropical regions.

Sometimes, the way to raise consciousness about global warming is to spotlight a life form that humans might feel sympathy for. Many environmentalists have chosen to highlight the plight of the polar bear. Garry Hamilton has chosen a different animal: the arctic fox. With photographer Norbert Rosing, Hamilton has put together a treatise that is part documentary and part coffee table book that charts this little known animal. “Arctic Fox: Life at the Top of the World” is the finished product.

Hamilton documents the known history of the animal, what is known of its lifestyle, and the relationship that humans created with it. His prose captures beauty in this animal’s lifestyle, and Rosing’s photographs enhance this effect. One travels with Hamilton’s observations, feeling as though they are right along with the author, observing the small but beautiful animal.

Much like a decent film documentary, “Arctic Fox” gives a good overview of an animal that is not all that publicized. If global warming is going to affect one animal, then it will affect all. Although this book only focuses on only one, it contributes to the philosophy that the more humans know about the environment, the more they might be motivated to try and save it. Hamilton shows how global warming might be affect this hardy survivor and how it may fare in the upcoming century if temperatures rise. In a busy world populated with human concerns, his book reminds us that there is a world going on outside of us that is affected by humans nonetheless.