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Publisher's Summary

Nearly everyone who cares about dogs or cats knows that they have a sense of self that renders them unique. Yet traditional science and philosophy declare such feelings irrational and anthropomorphic. Animals, they say, have only the crudest form of thought and no sense of self at all. Leslie Irvine's If You Tame Me challenges these entrenched views by demonstrating that our experience of animals and their behavior tell a different story. In particular, dogs and cats have been significant elements in human history and valued members of our households for centuries. Why do we regard these companions as having distinct personalities and as being irreplaceable? Irvine looks closely at how people form connections with dogs and cats available for adoption in a shelter and reflects on her own relationships with animals. If You Tame Me makes a persuasive case for the existence of a sense of self in companion animals and calls upon us to reconsider our rights and obligations regarding the non-human creatures in our lives.

The book is published by Temple University Press.

©2003 Temple University (P)2017 Redwood Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"The book will also most certainly inspire animal lovers, who will gain more understanding about cats and dogs." ( Anthrozoos)
"This volume is an important contribution to the recent explosion of sociological analyses of the roles of animals in human life." ( The American Journal of Sociology)
"I learned much from reading this excellent book. I wish it a long life!" (Jeffrey Masson, author of When Elephants Weep: The Emotional Lives of Animals)

What listeners say about If You Tame Me

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As entertaining as informative

Irvine does an excellent job on this book of introducing sociological concepts and how they apply to animals, and does so in a way that is accessible and enjoyable to anyone not familiar with sociology. An informative and well written book about the animals that are a part of all our lives and their history in society.