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Putting the Horse before Descartes: My Life's Work on Behalf of Animals: Companion Animals and Animal Advocates

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Abstract

"Companion Animals and Animal Advocates" is one chapter of "Putting the Horse before Descartes: My Life's Work on Behalf of Animals."

When philosopher Bernard Rollin was six years old, he visited an animal shelter and learned that unwanted dogs are put to sleep. That event shaped his moral outlook and initiated his concern for how animals are treated. In his irreverent memoir, "Putting the Horse before Descartes," Rollin relates how he came to educate himself and others about the ethical treatment of animals and dedicate his life to improving animal welfare.

"Putting the Horse before Descartes" showcases this passionate animal advocate at his best. In witty, often disarming detail, Rollin describes how he became an outspoken critic of how animals were treated in veterinary and medical schools and research laboratories. He recalls teaching veterinary students about ethical issues and engaging in face-offs with ranchers and cowboys about branding methods and rodeo roping competitions. Rollin also describes his efforts to legally mandate more humane conditions for agricultural and laboratory animals. As public concern about animal welfare and the safety of the food supply heighten, Rollin carries on his work on a global scaleā€”in classrooms, in lecture halls, in legislatures, in meetings of agricultural associations, in industrial settings, and in print.

"Putting the Horse before Descartes" is ultimately much more than a memoir. Rollin not only provides a wide-ranging discussion of ethical issues in numerous settings but also testifies to the myriad ways that people of good conscience accept their ethical responsibility with regard to animals.

Submitter

Marcy Wilhelm-South

Purdue University

Date 2011
Publication Title Putting the Horse before Descartes: My Life's Work on Behalf of Animals
Pages 304
Series Title Animals and Ethics
ISBN/ISSN 9781592138258
Publisher Temple University Press
URL http://www.temple.edu/tempress/titles/1969_reg.html
Language English
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Tags
  1. Animal roles
  2. Animals and society
  3. Animals in culture
  4. Animal welfare
  5. Cats
  6. Dogs
  7. Euthanasia
  8. Mammals
  9. Pet ownership
  10. Philosophy
  11. shelters
  12. Stress
  13. Veterinarians