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Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way We Treat Animals

Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way We Treat Animals
Author: Karen Dawn
ISBN 13: 9780061351853
ISBN 10: 61351857
Edition: First Edition
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Publication Date: 2008-02-26
Format: Paperback
Pages: 400
List Price: $19.95

The animal rights movement has reached a tipping point. No longer a fringe extremist cause, it has become a social concern that leading members of society endorse and young people embrace. From Michael Vick's dog fighting scandal to the incredible success of the bestselling Skinny Bitch veggie diet book, animal rights issues have hit the headlines—and are being championed by students and senators, pop stars and producers, and actors and activists.

Don't you want to be part of the conversation? In Thanking the Monkey, Karen Dawn covers pets, fur, fashion, food, animal testing, activism, and more. But as the title playfully suggests, this isn't like any previous animal rights book. Thanking the Monkey is light on lectures meant to make you feel guilty if you're not a leather-eschewing vegan. It lets you have fun as you learn about Paul McCartney's love of lambs and why Prince won't wear wool. You'll meet Fall Out Boy's Andy Hurley and Pete Wentz—and their favorite traveling companion, Hemingway, Pete's dog. You'll read why Natalie Portman, Alicia Silverstone, and so many of those skinny but not bitchy actresses won't eat or wear animals. And you'll laugh over dozens of cartoons from Dan Piraro's Bizzaro to other animal-friendly comics.

This fun primer for a smart and socially committed generation delivers some serious surprises in the form of facts and figures about the treatment of animals. Yes, it will shock you with tales of primates still used in animal testing on nicotine or killed for oven cleaner. But it will also let you lighten up and laugh a little as we work out how to do a better job of thanking the monkey.

Publishers Weekly

Animal rights activist Dawn is familiar to readers of her memorable opinion pieces for the Washington Postas well as her daily e-newsletter DawnWatch, but her first book should gain her a wider audience. This is a cogent and thoroughly researched overview of all the major issues in animal rights, past and present, She defines animal rights "more loosely than some would like," focusing on the general movement to advance the interest of animals and "discourage the use of animals as objects of commerce." Her goal is "to tell you everything you wanted to know about animal rights-but were afraid to get into a fight about-and to let you weigh that information against your own values," and she succeeds admirably. Often supplying hilarious but pointed illustrations and quotes from well-known animal lovers such as Bill Maher and Natalie Portman, she illuminates the use of animals as pets, entertainment, food, in scientific testing and the "Green" movement. This has the potential to become a big hit for a general reading audience that wants to know what the fuss is about animal rights, as well as the many college students at the forefront of animal rights activism. (Feb. 26)

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