Human Dimensions: Public Opinion Research Concerning Wolves in the Great Lakes States of Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin

  • Kevin Schanning

16.1 Introduction

The recovery of the gray wolf (Canis lupus) in the western Great Lakes states is an exciting environmental success story. Changing social constructions are an essential part of the story of wolf recovery in the western Great Lakes region (Herda-Rapp and Goedeke 2005). In this chapter, I will examine the changing social construction (attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions) of wolves that set the stage for and facilitated the wolf's recovery across northern portions of Wisconsin, Michigan, and Minnesota. I focus on a social constructionist approach of how groups and individuals create and maintain various meanings concerning aspects to the world, in this case the wolf.

Social construction refers to the notion that beliefs, understandings, and values about the world are actively and creatively produced by human beings. Social constructionists hold that the world is made or invented, as opposed to merely given or taken for granted (Marshall 1998). Consequently, in the...


Gray Wolf Wolf Population Wolf Management Isle Royale Western Great Lake 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin Schanning
    • 1
  1. 1.Northland CollegeAshlandUSA

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