Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way We Treat Animals

Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way We Treat Animals

by Karen Dawn
4.6 6

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Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way We Treat Animals 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
ctfranklin28 More than 1 year ago
"Thanking the Monkey" is an eye-opening animal welfare classic just like "Animal Liberation" by Peter Singer. Written in an incredibly engaging style and visually-intriguing illustrations, this book offers something interesting for readers both in content and images. What I find particularly interesting is the author's boldness to cover areas of animal welfare that I had never even considered. Karen Dawn's message is not simply that we should be kind to animals. It is that we need to analyze our relationship with animals in a more comprehensive and active way. We need to consider whether eating factory-farmed chicken that are so stuffed with antibiotics that they can't sit upright and have their beaks chopped off. She asks us to consider whether we need to kill and skin dozens of animals for just one individual to make a fashion statement. She also questions whether we should have animals subjected to frivolous tests (cosmetic testing, smoking tests) when there are non-animal alternatives that are readily available. She also questions whether we should subject chimpanzees to smoking tests while pregnant, even though we already know that this damages a fetus. Karen Dawn isn't content to stay there, however. She analyzes animal welfare organizations, from Greenpeace to the World Wide Fund, openly questioning some of their recent decisions to allow hunters and other animal-harming supporters into their fold in order to raise funds. She also criticizes the organic and open-range movement. While stating in several places that free range and organic farming, she questions the brutality and treatment of animals in these environments that are supposed to be more "humane".  This book was truly an eye-opener because I always considered myself knowledgeable about animal welfare issues, but this book showed me how much I lacked. I didn't even consider the fact that the only way we get from a cow is if they are pregnant. I never considered what happened after the bullfight is over in the "Running of the Bulls". I also never considered what happens to animals that perform in the movies after they are retired. Her book cause me to really re-evaluate my common assumptions about modern man's interactions in many situations. We have been really cruel and careless to animals for a very long time in a lot of different ways! I highly (emphasis) recommend this book if you are interested or involved in animal welfare on any level, this will deepen your interest and desire to help animals. This book is not for the squeamish, however, Karen Dawn has no problem going into the gory details to prove a point!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was already a vegetarian, but this book puts what we eat into such a larger social context, I'm considering veganism. But the book is not overly sentimental, self-righteous or any of those things people associate with 'isms.' Instead it presents the author's own views coupled w/other opinions within the animal rights/activism movements and practical choices the casual eater may want to make simply b/c it's a good idea for your body or the earth. Even for those already aware of the atrocities associated w/circuses, sea parks and factory farms, the numerous links to videos and references to news pieces is eye-opening. The book looks and is organized like a text, but fortunately it doesn't read like one. All the chapters are very conversational filled with examples, quotes, high quality photos and comic strips. A great book to keep on the shelf and refer back to again and again.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Karen Dawn's book is going to make you continue to read. When I picked up this book from the local Barnes and Nobles I could not put it down because it was one of the first books that I had read that didn't act people from harming animals. Karen helps you think about what you can do with all of the information that she has given you. She is going to make you think about whats on your plate and will inform you of the actions you can take to be more compassionated when it comes to animals and the environment. How could you not love Karen Dawn? No one cant not love her because she will have you wanting more. Also, you should checkout Karen Dawns website dawnwatch
Guest More than 1 year ago
What brilliance! It is by far the best, most practical, balanced, logical, and well written book on animal rights and animal welfare I have ever come across. I have read many. Karen Dawn writes that it's not 'all or nothing' that there are compassionate steps we all can make -- every one of us. It answered all my questions about many areas of animal abuse I wasn't aware of. It's important to know what your money supports when you patron places like Sea World or the Circus. How about that fur collar? It might come from a dog or cat. It might be labeled fake, but really be from a domesticated animal. What about the horse meat industry? Cattle ranching supports horse slaughter. Love horses? Don't eat cows. Seriously. It's all connected. All people, meat eaters too, can take steps to help animals live better. You learn about this in a very, very insightful way with humor and compassion. There's no name calling or holier than thou in this book. Karen rocks! It's not about perfection, it's about progression.