Bees in America

  • by Tammy Horn
  • Narrated by Laura Jennings
  • 9 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Honey bees - and the qualities associated with them - have quietly influenced American values for four centuries. During every major period in the country's history, bees and beekeepers have represented order and stability in a country without a national religion, political party, or language. Bees in America is an enlightening cultural history of bees and beekeeping in the United States. Tammy Horn, herself a beekeeper, offers a varied social and technological history from the colonial period, when the British first introduced bees to the New World, to the present, when bees are being used by the American military to detect bombs. Still a powerful representation of success, the industrious honey bee continues to serve both as a source of income and a metaphor for globalization as America emerges as a leader in the Information Age.

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What the Critics Say

“A fascinating and very readable cultural history of bees and beekeeping in the United States.” (Choice)
“Introduces some big political ideas that are very much worth knowing about. . . . Also full of the kind of rich detail that a narrow focus, paradoxically, makes room for.” (Christian Science Monitor)
“Horn has written a book on beekeeping history that will appeal to the general public, as well as beekeepers. I know that U.S. beekeepers will be grateful that Tammy Horn is sharing the story of their love affair with [the] honey bee to the general population. I can't help but believe that after reading Horn's book, more people will be stimulated to explore the wonderful world of beekeeping! Bees in America is a welcome respite from our fast-paced, technology-driven society.” (American Bee Journal)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Beekeeping changed America

If you like the development or understanding of American history. This book does a wonderful job explaining how it developed American ideas and philosophy of independence and individualism
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- James Morris

Very thorough

Would you try another book from Tammy Horn and/or Laura Jennings?

I would not try to listen to another reading from Laura Jennings. She never takes a breath. On and on and on! Very little phrasing, very little variation in tone. It took everything I had to listen to the end.


What was one of the most memorable moments of Bees in America?

The book itself must have been a doctoral thesis. IT is so very complete. I was more interested in the science and it was very complete. It gave history and special developments in modern bee keeping. I thought that it was fascinating how one researcher found out how close to place the frames in the hive so that the bees would build on the frames themselves. It allowed the honey and combs to be easily removed and harvested.


Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Laura Jennings?

I don't know, but it seemed like she was under some time compulsion. Maybe she was trying to drone on like the sound of the bees!?!


Did Bees in America inspire you to do anything?

I have thought that it would be interesting to keep bees some day. It makes you think that there could be a small living from it.


Any additional comments?

I liked most of the book. The author delved deeply into cultural elements and how the image and concept of the bee was used in marketing and music. I was less interested in this and more interested in the science.

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- David B

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-13-2013
  • Publisher: University Press Audiobooks