Impact of Beauty

"Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy." Anne Frank 1929-1945

Beauty can come at a cost. Some forms of body modification, such as foot binding, can be painful and cause long-term damage. Toxic materials, such as mercury, used in the hat trade poisoned workers and polluted the environment.

Hunting elephants for ivory and tropical birds for feathers, has put them at the risk of extinction. Non-native animals, such as mink, have escaped into the countryside, disrupting the local ecology. The market for tourist souvenirs has led to the looting of ancient sites.

Increased food production and industrialisation frequently forces indigenous people to give up their land and their way of life in order to adopt a new one they do not benefit from.

Black beaver fur felt top hat made for Birch Brothers of Stroud

Beaver fur was prized for its lustrous sheen. When hunting and habitat destruction drove the European beaver to extinction, trade with North America supplied the hatters of Europe.

In the 19th century silk replaced beaver for hat making, but it was not until the 1920s that Canadian beaver numbers began to recover.