Loving Animals

Loving Animals

Toward A New Animal Advocacy

Book - 2011
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"The contemporary animal rights movement encompasses a wide range of sometimes-competing agendas from vegetarianism to animal liberation. For people for whom pets are family members--animal lovers outside the fray--extremist positions in which all human-animal interaction is suspect often discourage involvement in the movement to end cruelty to other beings. In Loving Animals, Kathy Rudy argues that in order to achieve such goals as ending animal testing and factory farming, activists need to be better attuned to the profound emotional, even spiritual, attachment that many people have with the animals in their lives.Offering an alternative to both the acceptance of animal exploitation and radical animal liberation, Rudy shows that a deeper understanding of the nature of our feelings for and about animals can redefine the human-animal relationship in a positive way. Through extended interviews with people whose lives are intertwined with animals, analysis of the cultural representation of animals, and engaging personal accounts, she explores five realms in which humans use animals: as pets, for food, in entertainment, in scientific research, and for clothing. In each case she presents new methods of animal advocacy to reach a more balanced and sustainable relationship association built on reciprocity and connection.Using this intense emotional bond as her foundation, Rudy suggests that the nearly universal stories we tell of living with and loving animals will both broaden the support for animal advocacy and inspire the societal changes that will improve the lives of animals--and humans--everywhere. "--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Press, c2011
ISBN: 9780816674688
Characteristics: xxii, 260 p. ; 24 cm


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Apr 02, 2012

Knowing that the vast majority of animals that are mistreated are those used in food production, I went straight to the chapter on "The Animal on Your Plate". I was very disappointed. She blamed her vegan diet for making her ill (she was eating mostly processed foods, apparently), and claims vegans have the wrong strategy since most American's won't stop eating meat. "But even still, the question of whether it's ethical to kill animals for meat still haunts me." she writes (p.95).
I question her anti-vegan rant because many more people are going vegan in the US in just the last couple of years. At the same time, the number of 'meat-reducers' and those seeking humanely raised alternatives to the confined animal feeding operations is growing. She raises a good point that organic meat and egg is often from these factory farms. The animal rights movement is going through a new stage of progress, one which corporations and many farmers fear tremendously. It is better if we encourage locovores, meat-reducers, and the vegans to advocate for the welfare of animals, and work together in this manner. Based on this chapter alone, I won't be reading this book in any more detail. I rather recommend Melanie Joy's book, Strategic Action for Animals. (You might have to request it as an Inter-library loan or suggestion to purchase) or other books on this subject. A movement divided will not progress like a movement united.


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