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Animal Rights: What Everyone Needs to Know Paperback – 24 Feb 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: OUP USA (24 Feb. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019973996X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199739967
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 2 x 14 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 50,796 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Waldau is particularly interesting (The Guardian review)

About the Author

Paul Waldau is a scholar working at the intersection of animal studies, ethics, religion, law and cultural studies. He has served multiple times as the Bob Barker Lecturer on Animal Law at Harvard Law School, directed animal law reading groups at Yale Law School, and was the Director of Tufts University's Center for Animals and Public Policy from 2004 through 2008.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By M Blake on 26 Jan. 2012
Format: Paperback
Well written book giving an overview of almost every aspect of the "animal rights" debate from quite a detailed section on Law to social and cultural discussions - should be a must read for everyone it would get a lot of people thinking differently about non-human animals - sadly though only those with an interest in animal protection are likely to read it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By The Leveller on 27 Feb. 2015
Format: Paperback
Explores how animals require rights to stop them from being annihilated by humans. This is a must read
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fantastic book, opens your eyes to things you may have briefly considered and now this book clarifies them for you. A definite must (this is for serious academics and not just bunny huggers!)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 5 reviews
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
A book about dogs, law, the arts, visionaries and more.... 10 Feb. 2011
By Lisa F. Kane - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Paul Waldau's book charts a broad, easy-to-follow pathway through the thorny world of animal rights. As a fellow traveler in this difficult landscape, and one singled out for some attention in the book, I am especially grateful for his effort. Waldau's smooth style, engaging voice, and deep understanding of the subject matter make his book particularly useful. He discusses many important ways by which humans define their relationship to non-human animals, including science, law and philosophy, history and culture, education and the arts. These large topics are broken down into manageable size through a series of inquiries, like: "Who, what are companion animals?" "Does animal protection occur in all cultures?" "What is happening today in animal law?". Waldau addresses each question with quiet authority, focusing the reader's attention on facts, themes and contexts necessary for a broad and balanced understanding. I believe most readers will find this to be a nourishing book, one that satisfies intellectual curiosity and enlarges the boundaries of compassion.
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Insightful Brilliance 11 Feb. 2011
By J. Croft - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found Animal Rights to be an absolute pleasure. I've read it twice and have thoroughly enjoyed Waldau's insightful prose on a highly convoluted issue. His writing is very easy to understand and his knowledge on the subject is unmatched. This is a great book for anyone new to the debate, but provides endless new points to ponder for those of us who have been entrenched for years. I HIGHLY recommend this work.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A missed opportunity 30 Jan. 2015
By Bert - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A missed opportunity, alas. This is the fourth book I have read in Oxford's "What Everyone Needs to Know" series, and the first that I found to be less than excellent. Vague generalities abound, with very little in the way of precise, factual information. It reads as if the author has a sort of meta-interest in discourse within the world of animal welfare, but not an interest in the nuts and bolts of animal welfare per se -- an approach that might be fine in itself, but is a far cry from "What Everyone Needs to Know." My favorite part was Chapter 10, "Major Figures and Organizations in the Animal Rights Movement," precisely because the fact-to-generality ratio was highest in this chapter. But even here, generalities are, well, general. The section "A singular commitment, a controversial organization -- Ingrid Newkirk" (concerning the head of PETA) opens with "Reviled by many, idolized by many..." and repeats the word "controversial," but the nature of any controversy is not mentioned at all.

The other books I have read in the "What Everyone Needs to Know" series leave the reader with the notion (deserved, I think) that they have a solid understanding of the main issues, ideas, and events in the topic covered; not so this book. What you are more likely to leave with is the idea that humans have a long and varied history with animals, where some of the variance is cross-cultural, and that the terms "animal rights" and "animal welfare" lend themselves to varied interpretations. I am no expert in the area of animal welfare, but I think most readers will get a lot more out of Peter Singer's classic Animal Liberation, or out of the Sunstein and Nussbaum edited volume, Animal Rights: Current Debates and New Directions, than from this tepid book.
Three Stars 26 April 2015
By Valerie Rigual - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
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12 of 52 people found the following review helpful
Not Much Here... 11 Mar. 2011
By John in Minnesota - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I found this book interesting, but overall did not think much of it, for several unrelated reasons. First, the author didn't seem to address the important issue of what our society would be like if animals are granted rights. What would people eat in such a world? How would our relationships with pets change? How would he have society handle a violation of an animal's rights by another animal (as occurs every day in nature)? Second, he presents lots of questions, but doesn't answer many of them. For example, which animals should have which rights? He presents no answer to this. Third, the book is fairly repetitious, with many thoughts, phrases and words repeated unnecessarily. Finally, I find the idea of humans acknowledging that animals have rights to be ridiculous, and this book did nothing to convince me that I'm wrong. Humans have rights and responsibilities, and one of our responsibilities is to treat animals humanely even while we breed and raise many of them for our subsistence. I think that's what everyone needs to know.
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