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Animal Rights: What Everyone Needs to Know [Paperback]

Paul Waldau
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

24 Feb 2011 What Everyone Needs To Know
In this compelling volume in the What Everyone Needs to Know series, Paul Waldau expertly navigates the many heated debates surrounding the complex and controversial animal rights movement.
Organized around a series of probing questions, this timely resource offers the most complete, even-handed survey of the animal rights movement available. The book covers the full spectrum of issues, beginning with a clear, highly instructive definition of animal rights. Waldau looks at the different concerns surrounding companion animals, wild animals, research animals, work animals, and animals used for food, provides a no-nonsense assessment of the treatment of animals, and addresses the philosophical and legal arguments that form the basis of animal rights. Along the way, readers will gain insight into the history of animal protection-as well as the political and social realities facing animals today-and become familiar with a range of hot-button topics, from animal cognition and autonomy, to attempts to balance animal cruelty versus utility. Chronicled here are many key figures and organizations responsible for moving the animal rights movement forward, as well as legislation and public policy that have been carried out around the world in the name of animal rights and animal protection. The final chapter of this indispensable volume looks ahead to the future of animal rights, and delivers an animal protection mandate for citizens, scientists, governments, and other stakeholders.
With its multidisciplinary, non-ideological focus and all-inclusive coverage, Animal Rights represents the definitive survey of the animal rights movement-one that will engage every reader and student of animal rights, animal law, and environmental ethics.

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Animal Rights: What Everyone Needs to Know + Making a Killing: The Political Economy of Animal Rights
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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: 20.6 x 13.7 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 322,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Waldau is particularly interesting (The Guardian review)

Paul Waldau's book represent the definitive survey of the animal rights movement - one that will engage every reader and student of animal rights. (

About the Author

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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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be compulsory reading for everyone 26 Jan 2012
By M Blake
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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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book about dogs, law, the arts, visionaries and more.... 10 Feb 2011
By Lisa F. Kane - Published on
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.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful Brilliance 11 Feb 2011
By J. Croft - Published on
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.
8 of 44 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Much Here... 11 Mar 2011
By John in Minnesota - Published on
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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