Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxiv
  2. Contexts

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 3-46 Open Access
    3. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 47-72 Open Access
  3. Reframing Bovine TB (c. 1960–1995)

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 73-73
    2. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 75-117 Open Access
    3. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 119-159 Open Access
    4. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 161-201 Open Access
  4. Contesting Animal Health (1996–Present)

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 203-203
    2. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 205-240 Open Access
    3. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 241-274 Open Access
    4. Angela Cassidy
      Pages 275-294 Open Access
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 295-366

About this book


“Dr Cassidy draws pertinent general conclusions about generating policy and mediating the role of the expert in today’s science-sceptic and increasingly polarised society... It is both a useful and original contribution, specifically to the history of zoonotic disease policy, and policy history more generally.”

Helen Bynum, Author of Spitting Blood: The History of Tuberculosis (2012)  

This open access book provides the first critical history of the controversy over whether to cull wild badgers to control the spread of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) in British cattle. This question has plagued several professional generations of politicians, policymakers, experts and campaigners since the early 1970s. Questions of what is known, who knows, who cares, who to trust and what to do about this complex problem have been the source of scientific, policy, and increasingly vociferous public debate ever since. This book integrates contemporary history, science and technology studies, human-animal relations, and policy research to conduct a cross-cutting analysis. It explores the worldviews of those involved with animal health, disease ecology and badger protection between the 1970s and 1990s, before reintegrating them to investigate the recent public polarisation of the controversy. Finally it asks how we might move beyond the current impasse.


bTB TB Cow Robert Koch Cattle Testing Vaccination Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF) Badger cull Policy Legislation Welfare Land and wildlife management Oral history Science and society Open Access

Authors and affiliations

  • Angela Cassidy
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Rural Policy Research (CRPR) University of ExeterExeterUK

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2019
  • License CC BY
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages History
  • Print ISBN 978-3-030-19185-6
  • Online ISBN 978-3-030-19186-3
  • Buy this book on publisher's site