The Origin of Teddy Bears

I saw this link on twitter and of course could not resist watching the video. I mean, c’mon, a TED Talk (awesome) about teddy bears (awesomer), who could? It’s an interesting presentation on the way stories can affect perceptions and zeitgeist. They can impact our emotions, our priorities, and even our politics. Oh, and there’s some cool illustrations of bears and presidents in this.

In 1902, President Theodore Roosevelt legendarily spared the life of a black bear — and prompted a plush toy craze for so-called “teddy bears.” Writer Jon Mooallem digs into this story and asks us to consider how the tales we tell about wild animals have real consequences for a species’ chance of survival — and the natural world at large.

The presenter:

Jon Mooallem is the author of “Wild Ones: A Sometimes Dismaying, Weirdly Reassuring Story About Looking at People Looking at Animals in America.

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