Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Eating Animals
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Eating Animals

4.2 219
by Jonathan Safran Foer
     
 

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Jonathan Safran Foer spent much of his teenage and college years oscillating between omnivore and vegetarian. But on the brink of fatherhood-facing the prospect of having to make dietary choices on a child's behalf-his casual questioning took on an urgency  His quest for answers ultimately required him to visit factory farms in the middle of the night, dissect the

Overview

Jonathan Safran Foer spent much of his teenage and college years oscillating between omnivore and vegetarian. But on the brink of fatherhood-facing the prospect of having to make dietary choices on a child's behalf-his casual questioning took on an urgency  His quest for answers ultimately required him to visit factory farms in the middle of the night, dissect the emotional ingredients of meals from his childhood, and probe some of his most primal instincts about right and wrong. Brilliantly synthesizing philosophy, literature, science, memoir and his own detective work, Eating Animals explores the many fictions we use to justify our eating habits-from folklore to pop culture to family traditions and national myth-and how such tales can lull us into a brutal forgetting. Marked by Foer's profound moral ferocity and unvarying generosity, as well as the vibrant style and creativity that made his previous books, Everything is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, widely loved, Eating Animals is a celebration and a reckoning, a story about the stories we've told-and the stories we now need to tell. 

Editorial Reviews

Philadelphia Daily News
"Eating Animals stands as a pop-cultural landmark, destined to be the starting point for a lot of overdue conversations."
All Things Considered NPR
"Eating Animals isn't just an anti-meat screed, or an impassioned case for vegetarianism. Instead, Foer tells a story that is part memoir and part investigative report....It's a book that takes America's meat-dominated diet to task."
MD Andrew Weil
"Foer's aim is not to make your choice, but to inform it. He has done us all a great service, and we, and the animals, owe him our thanks."
Publishers Weekly
Starred Review.

The latest from novelist Foer is a surprising but characteristically brilliant memoir-investigation, boasting an exhaustively-argued account of one man-child's decade-long struggle with vegetarianism. On the eve of becoming a father, Foer takes all the arguments for and against vegetarianism a neurotic step beyond and, to decide how to feed his coming baby, investigates everything from the intelligence level of our most popular meat providers-cattle, pigs, and poultry-to the specious self-justifications (his own included) for eating some meat products and not others. Foer offers a lighthearted counterpoint to his investigation in doting portraits of his loving grandmother, and her meat-and-potatoes comfort food, leaving him to wrestle with the comparative weight of food's socio-cultural significance and its economic-moral-political meaning. Without pulling any punches-factory farming is given the full expose treatment-Foer combines an array of facts, astutely-written anecdotes, and his furious, inward-spinning energy to make a personal, highly entertaining take on an increasingly visible (and book-selling) moral question; call it, perhaps, An Omnivore's Dilemma.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Kirkus Reviews
Celebrated novelist Foer (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, 2005, etc.) examines the ethics and practical realities of eating things with faces. The author's first book-length work of nonfiction opens with a reminiscence of a grandmother who scraped for food to stay alive during the dark years of the Holocaust, yet refused to violate kashrut law to eat a proffered piece of pork, saying, "If nothing matters, there's nothing to save." Against that time of want and the food insecurity his grandmother expressed for the rest of her life, Foer examines this time of too-muchness, of cupboards full of luxuries and days full of meaty meals made possible by an elaborate system of factories, stockyards and slaughterhouses. "Eating animals," he writes, "is one of those topics, like abortion, where it is impossible to definitively know some of the most important details . . . and that cuts right to one's deepest discomforts, often provoking defensiveness or aggression." To his credit, the author is not shy of exploring his own discomforts while engaging in near-Talmudic analyses of the finer points of being a carnivore: If a pig is as smart as, if not smarter, than a dog and just as fond of playing with toys, then why aren't they allowed to curl up next to the fire with us? Of course, Foer allows, there are cultures where eating dogs is considered a good thing, though none that come to mind where having pigs as pets is common. Given the environmental costs of eating meat-"for every ten tuna, sharks, and other large predatory fish that were in our oceans fifty to a hundred years ago, only one is left"-and the looming sense that a time of scarcity is again in the offing, Foer's case for ethicalvegetarianism is wholly compelling. A blend of solid-and discomforting-reportage with fierce advocacy that will make committed carnivores squeal.
Susan Salter Reynolds
Some of our finest journalists (Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser) and animal rights activists (Peter Singer, Temple Grandin)-not to mention Gandhi, Jesus, Pythagoras, Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, John Locke and Immanuel Kant (and so many others)-have hurled themselves against the question of eating meat and the moral issues inherent in killing animals for food. Foer, 32, in this, his first work of nonfiction, intrepidly joins their ranks...It is the kind of wisdom that, in all its humanity and clarity, deserves a place at the table with our greatest philosophers.
Los Angeles Times
Jennifer Schuessler - New York Times Book Review
"[Eating Animals] is a postmodern version of Peter Singer's 1975 manifesto Animal Liberation...Foer is the latest in a long line of distinguished literary vegetarians."
Susan Salter Reynolds - Los Angeles Times
"Some of our finest journalists (Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser) and animal rights activists (Peter Singer, Temple Grandin)-not to mention Gandhi, Jesus, Pythagoras, Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, John Locke and Immanuel Kant (and so many others)-have hurled themselves against the question of eating meat and the moral issues inherent in killing animals for food. Foer, 32, in this, his first work of nonfiction, intrepidly joins their ranks...It is the kind of wisdom that, in all its humanity and clarity, deserves a place at the table with our greatest philosophers."
Entertainment Weekly
"Stirring....compelling, earnest...Foer brings an invigorating moral clarity to the topic."
Andrew Weil
Eating Animals carefully, deliberately, takes you through every relevant dimension of factory farming...One sees it from the inside, the outside, the moral high ground, the dithering consumer level, through Foer's family stories, from slaughterhouse workers, animal behaviorists, even from defenders of the system... Foer's aim is not to make your choice, but to inform it. He has done us all a great service, and we, and the animals, owe him our thanks.
The Huffington Post
Jennifer Schuessler
[Eating Animals] is a postmodern version of Peter Singer's 1975 manifesto Animal Liberation...Foer is the latest in a long line of distinguished literary vegetarians.
New York Times Book Review
Geoff Nicholson
A work of moral philosophy...After reading this book, it's hard to disagree [with Foer].
San Francisco Chronicle
Holly Silva
[Eating Animals] is extraordinarily thoughtful and intelligent, and reads more like philosophy than journalism.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Geoff Nicholson - San Francisco Chronicle
"A work of moral philosophy...After reading this book, it's hard to disagree [with Foer]."
Holly Silva - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"[Eating Animals] is extraordinarily thoughtful and intelligent, and reads more like philosophy than journalism."
J.M. Coetzee
"The everyday horrors of factory farming are evoked so vividly, and the case against the people who run the system presented so convincingly, that anyone who, after reading Foer's book, continues to consume the industry's products must be without a heart, or impervious to reason, or both."
Dr. Andrew Weil - The Huffington Post
"Eating Animals carefully, deliberately, takes you through every relevant dimension of factory farming...One sees it from the inside, the outside, the moral high ground, the dithering consumer level, through Foer's family stories, from slaughterhouse workers, animal behaviorists, even from defenders of the system... Foer's aim is not to make your choice, but to inform it. He has done us all a great service, and we, and the animals, owe him our thanks."
The Oprah Magazine O
PRAISE FOR EATING ANIMALS:

"For a hot young writer to train his sights on a subject as unpalatable as meat production and consumption takes raw nerve. What makes Eating Animals so unusual is vegetarian Foer's empathy for human meat eaters, his willingness to let both factory farmers and food reform activists speak for themselves, and his talent for using humor to sweeten a sour argument."

From the Publisher
PRAISE FOR EATING ANIMALS:"

For a hot young writer to train his sights on a subject as unpalatable as meat production and consumption takes raw nerve. What makes Eating Animals so unusual is vegetarian Foer's empathy for human meat eaters, his willingness to let both factory farmers and food reform activists speak for themselves, and his talent for using humor to sweeten a sour argument."—O, The Oprah Magazine"

The everyday horrors of factory farming are evoked so vividly, and the case against the people who run the system presented so convincingly, that anyone who, after reading Foer's book, continues to consume the industry's products must be without a heart, or impervious to reason, or both."
J.M. Coetzee"

Stirring....compelling, earnest...Foer brings an invigorating moral clarity to the topic."—Entertainment Weekly"

Eating Animals carefully, deliberately, takes you through every relevant dimension of factory farming...One sees it from the inside, the outside, the moral high ground, the dithering consumer level, through Foer's family stories, from slaughterhouse workers, animal behaviorists, even from defenders of the system... Foer's aim is not to make your choice, but to inform it. He has done us all a great service, and we, and the animals, owe him our thanks."—Dr. Andrew Weil, The Huffington Post"

[Eating Animals] is a postmodern version of Peter Singer's 1975 manifesto Animal Liberation...Foer is the latest in a long line of distinguished literary vegetarians."—Jennifer Schuessler, New York Times Book Review"

Some of our finest journalists (Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser) and animal rights activists (Peter Singer, Temple Grandin)-not to mention Gandhi, Jesus, Pythagoras, Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, John Locke and Immanuel Kant (and so many others)-have hurled themselves against the question of eating meat and the moral issues inherent in killing animals for food. Foer, 32, in this, his first work of nonfiction, intrepidly joins their ranks...It is the kind of wisdom that, in all its humanity and clarity, deserves a place at the table with our greatest philosophers."—Susan Salter Reynolds, Los Angeles Times"

A work of moral philosophy...After reading this book, it's hard to disagree [with Foer]."—Geoff Nicholson, San Francisco Chronicle"

The latest from novelist Foer is a surprising but characteristically brilliant memoir-investigation, boasting an exhaustively-argued account of one man-child's decade-long struggle with vegetarianism...Without pulling any punches-factory farming is given the full expose treatment-Foer combines an array of facts, astutely-written anecdotes, and his furious, inward-spinning energy to make a personal, highly entertaining take on an increasingly visible...moral question; call it, perhaps, An Omnivore's Dilemma."—Publishers Weekly"

[Eating Animals] is extraordinarily thoughtful and intelligent, and reads more like philosophy than journalism."—Holly Silva, St. Louis Post-Dispatch"

Foer's case for ethical vegetarianism is wholly compelling...A blend of solid-and discomforting-reportage with fierce advocacy that will make committed carnivores squeal."—Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316069885
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
09/01/2010
Pages:
341
Sales rank:
88,531
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)

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What People are saying about this

J.M. Coetzee
The everyday horrors of factory farming are evoked so vividly, and the case against the people who run the system presented so convincingly, that anyone who, after reading Foer's book, continues to consume the industry's products must be without a heart, or impervious to reason, or both.

Meet the Author

Jonathan Safran Foer is one of the most acclaimed young writers of his generation, a "certified wunderkind" (Time) whose work has appeared in The Paris Review, The New York Times, and The New Yorker. He has earned a National Jewish Book Award, a Guardian First Book Award, and remarkable praise for his first two novels, Everything Is Illuminated (adapted for film in 2005) and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. EATING ANIMALS is his first work of nonfiction.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
New York, New York
Date of Birth:
February 21, 1977
Place of Birth:
Washington, D.C.
Education:
B.A. in Philosophy, Princeton University, 1999

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