Wild Souls: Freedom and Flourishing in the Non-Human World

Wild Souls: Freedom and Flourishing in the Non-Human World

by Emma Marris
Wild Souls: Freedom and Flourishing in the Non-Human World

Wild Souls: Freedom and Flourishing in the Non-Human World

by Emma Marris


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Winner of the 2022 Rachel Carson Environment Book Award * Winner of the 2022 Science in Society Journalism Award (Books) * Finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize

“Thoughtful, insightful, and wise, Wild Souls is a landmark work.”—Ed Yong, author of An Immense World

"Fascinating . . . hands-on philosophy, put to test in the real world . . . Marris believes that our idea of wildness—our obsession with purity—is misguided. No animal remains untouched by human hands . . . the science isn’t the hard part. The real challenge is the ethics, the act of imagining our appropriate place in that world." —Outside Magazine

From an acclaimed environmental writer, a groundbreaking and provocative new vision for our relationships with—and responsibilities toward—the planet’s wild animals.

Protecting wild animals and preserving the environment are two ideals so seemingly compatible as to be almost inseparable. But in fact, between animal welfare and conservation science there exists a space of underexamined and unresolved tension: wildness itself. When is it right to capture or feed wild animals for the good of their species? How do we balance the rights of introduced species with those already established within an ecosystem? Can hunting be ecological? Are any animals truly wild on a planet that humans have so thoroughly changed? No clear guidelines yet exist to help us resolve such questions.

Transporting readers into the field with scientists tackling these profound challenges, Emma Marris tells the affecting and inspiring stories of animals around the globe—from Peruvian monkeys to Australian bilbies, rare Hawai’ian birds to majestic Oregon wolves. And she offers a companionable tour of the philosophical ideas that may steer our search for sustainability and justice in the non-human world. Revealing just how intertwined animal life and human life really are, Wild Souls will change the way we think about nature—and our place within it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781635574944
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 06/29/2021
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 460,126
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Emma Marris is an award-winning journalist whose writing on science and the environment has appeared in the New York Times, the Atlantic, National Geographic, Wired, Outside, High Country News, and many other publications, including Best American Science and Nature Writing. Her previous book, Rambunctious Garden, argued for a new conservation philosophy for the 21st century. Her TED Talk about redefining nature has over 1.4 million views. She was also featured on the TED Radio Hour and the series Adam Ruins Everything. She is based in Klamath Falls, Oregon.

Table of Contents

1 The Flight of the 'Akikiki 1

2 Our Animal Kin 15

3 Philosophies of the Non-Human 28

4 Between Dog and Wolf 47

5 The Lion in the Backyard 69

6 The Autocratic Menagerie 84

7 The Dignity of the Condor 109

8 Are Species Valuable? 122

9 Feeding Polar Bears 137

10 The Arrows Tip 152

11 Bloodshed for Biodiversity 169

12 The Friendly Toutouwai 189

13 Compassionate Conservation 206

14 Bilby Thunderdome 221

15 How to Be a Good Human to the Non-Human World 244

Acknowledgments 261

Notes 269

Bibliography 291

Index 323

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