Does living with a pet really make people happier and healthier? What can we learn from biomedical research with mice? Who enjoys a better quality of life - the chicken on a dinner plate or a rooster who dies in a Saturday night cockfight? Why is it wrong to eat the family dog? Drawing on over two decades of research in the emerging field of anthrozoology - the science of human-animal relations - Hal Herzog offers surprising answers to these and other questions related to the moral conundrums we face day in and day out regarding the creatures with whom we share our world. Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat is a highly entertaining and illuminating journey through the full spectrum of human-animal relations, based on Herzog's groundbreaking research on animal rights activists, cockfighters, professional dog show handlers, veterinary students, and biomedical researchers. Blending anthropology, history, brain science, behavioral economics, evolutionary psychology, and philosophy, Herzog carefully crafts a seamless narrative enriched with real-life anecdotes, scientific research, and his own sense of moral ambivalence.
Alternately poignant, challenging, and laugh-out-loud funny, Herzog's enlightening and provocative book will forever change the way we look at our relationships with other creatures and, ultimately, how we see ourselves.
©2010 Hal Herzog (P)2010 Tantor
"Insightful, compassionate and humorous." (Kirkus)
I would, especially with other people, because each bit of information that Herzog has chosen to include in his books is very interesting, and will remain so. This book has given me so much to think about that I had never before considered.
Ok so the narration is the hardest part to get through in the beginning. He really does sound like a robot, and I had to check a few times to see if this wasn't a computer-generated voice. But, somehow, you get used to it and then it becomes the perfect voice for this somewhat geeky take on the relationship between humans and animals.
Not exactly, but a book that I was always happy to start. I actually listened to this book between listening to other books (I tend to listen and read several books at a time). This book was very easy to pick up after a week or two.
I loved this book, it was so interesting. Mr. Herzog has an ability to present studies and ideas, and even sometimes his opinion, but in a way that encourages me to think about it myself and cultivate my own opinion--or not. He has a way of just presenting the information, and it doesn't all need to generate an opinion. Just really well research, really well planned out, I enjoyed this book very much, Mr. Herzog, and I heartily recommend it to anyone who is considering purchasing this book.
Just an all around awesome person.
I think this book could have been much shorter and with less Rhetoric. He just rambles on and on. skip this one.
Jumps on his bed while licking the bottom of one foot. He persists in this life affirming act despite interference from the head nurse.
This is not lightweight reading, penned to amuse by a respectable ink-slinger, as I thought was the case when I bought it. I like those sorts of books every now and then. They can be fun. Instead, it's academic presentations woven into book form by a professor in North Carolina, who calls himself an "anthro-zoologist." What the devil is that? It's a state-paid "scholar" who studies interactions between humans and animals. Things like: why people choose certain animals for lab tests and not others. Or, the ethics of deciding whether to throw house sparrow eggs out of a bluebird box. Or, the off-kilter philosophical basis of vegetarianism. Hmmmm. Could an "anthro-zoologist" exist outside the netherworld of a university? Not if he or she had to make a living. (Ditto those who study things like recurrent themes in reality television, or the racism of baseball logos, or syntax used in electronic texting. If such "scholars" disappeared tomorrow who would miss them?) A lot of what Herzog writes is already known by most of us, anyway: Big eyes make humans want to baby the animals who have them. No fooling. We anthropomorphize our pets, giving them human qualities they do not process. No fooling. Some animal rights activists go overboard. No fooling. Neutered male cats are more affectionate to humans than spayed female cats. I could have told the "anthro-zoologists" that and saved the government some funding money. Even if I were wrong about those cats—who cares? On top of this, I think Herzog tends to talk down to his readers, and this is exacerbated by the style of narration. By the way, I had the same problem with my bluebird boxes as one of Dr. Herzog's friends—house sparrows. I pulled their unhatched eggs out of the nest box and bought a b-b gun, and felt no moral pangs whatsoever. I got bluebirds that year, too. I suggest buyers pass this book by.
Still listening to this book so will update this review, possibly, when i'm done, but wanted to comment about narration. The intonation is very good and the narrator handles the subject matter well, but i keep listening to him and thinking, this man is not really real. His voice sounds altered by a sound board or something! It reminds me of a bad reality show. It's almost like it's a homogenized voice created in the studio for audio. Sorry Mel!
Eh - you know most of these books could be boiled down to Cliff Notes, and save us all a lot of time. I'm also not a huge fan of the Malcolm Gladwell analysis of society, which this book definitely mimicks. It's okay.
The best narrators I've heard tend to be British OR come from television news. Otherwise it's hit or miss. This one sounds not quite like a human being.
Learn, understand, then decide whether you accept or reject.
This book was entertaining and contains the author's journey in the subcultures revolving around animals, including labs, pet owners, hunters, underground animal sports and does a decent job in explaining their points of view.
Learning to Love Loves Labours Lost
The book casts an unflinching view on extant research used to support our assumptions and deeply-held beliefs about animal behavior and our relationship with the animals in our lives. A plus--and a minus (at least in an audible version of the book)--is the extent to which Herzog jumps merrily from topic to topic. It's almost as though he created an outline and used it as a check-off list as he was writing. I'm glad he dealt with so many interesting topics, but in audible version, without the visual cue of a page break or a subject heading, the organization of the book felt a bit random.
This is an irrelevant question for a book review. I'm not talking to my book club members, who already own the book. I'm talking to potential consumers about the product, not its content.
Mel Foster has a great voice for a good deal of voice-over work, but this is not the text for him. He comes off as smooth and supercilious, even smug, as though he were adopting the early 20th Century "amusing newsreel" announcer tone, constantly explaining the joke to a half-wit audience that's only half in on the gag. He doesn't sound likeable, which is unfortunate for a book that delves so deeply into controversial subjects that already touch on highly emotional issues for some people. I would have cast someone who sounds knowledgeable and authentic, rather than authoritative and marginally mocking, someone who sounds as though he or she is invested in persuading the reader. More specifically, he has the habit of imbuing too many phrases with emphasis, which means nothing ultimately was emphasized. Hard to listen to for any length of time.
No. This is a dumb question. I'm reviewing a book, not pitching a script.
Audible, you need to redesign your review prompts.
This is a dryly written and read synopsis of human psychology as applied to our relationship with animals. The author establishes beyond a reasonable doubt in the first few chapters that our relationship with animals is, in essence, irrationally motivated, with a mix of complex moral and emotional overtones, not unlike, in my view, our attitude toward politics. I found it more informative than entertaining.
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