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The Most Dangerous Game?

The idea that man is the most dangerous game is repeated frequently enough that it's accepted as a truism.

The Most Dangerous Game?

A seriously annoyed bull elephant would be near the top of anyone’s list of dangerous game, but other candidates include insane big-game hunters on desert islands, wounded Cape buffalo, and jealous wives with rifles. It all depends on the circumstances. This elephant is a big old Okavango boy who had reservations about photographers. (Shooting Times photo)

In 1924 Collier’s magazine published one of the most famous short stories of all time. “The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell told of a man marooned on an island who finds himself pitted against a big-game hunter who pursues humans for sport. Having become bored with hunting animals, he had turned to the “most dangerous” game for entertainment.

Connell’s plot has since been used for several movies, the theme has been adapted for television, and it has even inspired a few real-life crimes.

The idea that man is the most dangerous game is repeated frequently enough that it’s accepted as a truism. But is it really true? In...

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