Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Animal Liberation” as Want to Read:
Animal Liberation
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Animal Liberation

by
4.17  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,213 Ratings  ·  296 Reviews

The Book That Started A Revolution

Since its original publication in 1975, this groundbreaking work has awakened millions of concerned men and women to the shocking abuse of animals everywhere -- inspiring a worldwide movement to eliminate much of the cruel and unnecessary laboratory animal experimentation of years past.

In this newly revised and expanded edition, author

...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published December 1st 2001 by Ecco Press (first published 1975)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Animal Liberation, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Animal Liberation

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Michael
I read the "bible" of the animal rights movement because I wanted to get some clue as to what is being thought. I should consider all views in order to change, consolidate or move on my own position.

On a very simple analysis, if you are guilty about existing and using the planets resources then this book will confirm your views and help you to rationalise your thoughts.

If you feel that you are part of nature and have every right to exist and survive (just like every other creature) then you can
...more
Joseph
Mar 08, 2015 Joseph rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: animal-rights
Animal Liberation is the book that started the modern animal rights movement. Peter Singer, the author, is an Australian philosopher. He is the Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, and laureate professor at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics (CAPPE), University of Melbourne. He specializes in applied ethics, approaching ethical issues from a secular preference utilitarian perspective.

In 1975, the first edition of Animal Liberation was published. It has b
...more
Abdulrahman
Mar 20, 2016 Abdulrahman rated it it was amazing
Full disclaimer: I'm describing very graphic scenes in the following paragraphs, but I'm not apologizing for it, because people need to know this. They need to realize what they are contributing to by consuming animals and animal products.

Sewar was a lovely spotted calf. She lived contentedly with her mother and fellow herd cows in the free wilderness. They grazed, ran around, and nipped at each other playfully under the watchful eye of the caring and warming sun. But one day, a group of the cru
...more
beggs
Jul 02, 2007 beggs rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Animal Liberation is credited with launching the animal rights movement in the industrialized world when it was first published in 1975 by the then relatively unknown, Peter Singer ([http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Si...]). You can blame all of the illogical stupidity of [http://www.peta.org] PETA on this book. But PETA's antics tend to blind people to any logical discussion of the real points in Animal Liberation. Singer does not support the animal rights movement epitomized by PETA but hold ...more
Annie
May 02, 2016 Annie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wishlist, philosophy
So this book.

I love this book for what it did for bringing animal rights into the semi-mainstream. Singer was a proper philosopher, not (just) a kookie hippie. His importance cannot be overstated.

But it wasn’t a shocking or profound read for me personally, probably because it’s so very influential. I spend a lot of time reading about animal ethics, so nothing- neither the animal abuses recounted nor the philosophical arguments against speciesism- was new to me.

Still, I feel remiss giving it les
...more
Ross Blocher
Dec 31, 2012 Ross Blocher rated it really liked it
Peter Singer builds a step-by-step, iron-clad ethical case for considering the welfare of animals as part of our ever-expanding circle of moral consideration. While non-human animals may not be our equals in many respects, the only thing that really matters is their shared ability to experience pain and suffering. Any attempt to draw a line between what makes humans worthy of consideration and non-human animals not worthy of consideration fails in establishing any kind of logical distinction. If ...more
Michael Bennett
Normally I won’t review nonfiction, since most of the time I don’t even give them a star rating. However, there a few exceptions. First of all I may end up reviewing some memoirs since I consider a good memoir to be a blend of fiction and nonfiction (think James Frey here, but also less sinister examples). So my major exception will be this book. I feel okay with reviewing this book because I do have a philosophy degree, and also because this book had a major impact on me at a fairly young age. ...more
Jessica
Jan 01, 2016 Jessica rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, animals
I was sitting in a doctor's office many years ago when a young woman came out of the doctor's office, looked over at me sitting in his waiting room and blared out, "I just ruined by health by being a vegetarian!" It isn't easy being a vegetarian, it sure wasn't for her, so if anyone takes on this endeavor, I hope they are well read up on the subject.

This book doesn't take this into account; instead he says to not worry about your health, it will be okay.

Then he says that he grows his own food.
...more
Sancho
Dec 25, 2013 Sancho rated it it was amazing
Even after so many years, most people remains either unaware or indifferent to the horrible way we are treating animals. Most people are unaware because it is difficult to see connections when you live in a city you never leave and just see a piece of red, inanimate matter wrapped in plastic that just tastes delicious.

Animal liberation must have been a shocking book, a revelation to many people about the unfair use and abuse animals suffer because of our insatiable search for pleasure, our ignor
...more
Eva
Jul 19, 2012 Eva rated it really liked it
An intriguing and informative book. I'll give it 4 stars because it's well written and makes you think, though I can't say I'd bother reading it again.

Modern philosopher Peter Singer argues--both abstractly and with detailed, concrete examples--that we are currently "speciesist" who must acknowledge that animals may not be our intellectual equals, but the relevant question is whether they, like we, suffer. He documents how they can and do, both psychologically and physically, in animal experimen
...more
Clifford
This classic makes its case in excruciating and stomach-turning detail, which of course is its intent. Piling on the data may be more persuasive than the mere logic behind the argument for veganism. Essentially, that's the conclusion the book comes to, and I have to say I am convinced. Whether I can put the conclusion into practice is another story.
Ionie
Jan 29, 2016 Ionie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
For me this book is important because before I read it I was almost not sure why i was a vegetarian. I held the view that animal's suffer but I did still think about meat and craved meat etc. However after reading this book I've realised how passionate I am about animal rights I now can't even ascertain the idea of eating meat and watching others eat it makes me feel quite uncomfortable. I wouldn't go as far as saying it changed my life but it helped me understand a lot more.

The writing style is
...more
Fredrik
Apr 19, 2016 Fredrik rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fakta
Så mange stjerner fordi jeg liker bøker som utfordrer fastgrodde tankemønstre med velfunderte argumenter. Dette er altså en slik bok.

Boken starter med å fortelle om artsisme (eller speciesism på engelsk), som er praksisen å verdsette noen høyere bare fordi de er av samme art som deg. Singer argumenterer for at artsgrensen er en kunstig grense, og at dyrs smerte og lidelse ikke er av noen mindre verdi enn menneskers smerte og lidelse. So far so good.

Videre forteller Singer om hvordan dyr lider av
...more
Quinn
Sep 02, 2012 Quinn rated it it was amazing
Peter Singer’s main argument in Animal Liberation is that humans’ current perception and treatment of animals is morally indefensible. He defends this view from multiple angles, and concludes that animals deserve “equal consideration” (which differs considerably from equal treatment) based solely on the fact that they can feel pain, and causing unnecessary pain is immoral. The current abuse of a being based solely on their species (which Singer refers to as “speciesism”) stems from similar moral ...more
Jack Ferreira
Mar 21, 2013 Jack Ferreira rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So glad to have finaly read what many consider as the "Bible of Animal Rights". It certaintly met my expectations and grounded, developed and solidified my views on the subject.

I assumed that it would be just philosophicaly centered all the way through, with a few references here and there to shed light on what animals actualy go through behind the scenes. I was pleasently surprised that he dedicated two whole chapters to describing the realities behind animal testing and factory farming.

Chapter
...more
Rachel E. Gross
Jun 26, 2016 Rachel E. Gross rated it really liked it
Singer’s greatest flaw is also his strength: he must follow the golden thread of logic to its bitter end. Here, he lays out the case for the liberation of animals, whose suffering we have long ignored as imaginary, immaterial, or unimportant. Along the way he coins “speciesism”—the term for our knee-jerk bias in favor of human interests. To be clear, Singer does not believe that animals should be treated equally to people, but rather that their distinct interests should be given equal considerat ...more
Lisa Vegan
May 19, 2007 Lisa Vegan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who want to read a primer on animal rights
This is an animal rights classic, and although there are so many animal rights books now, this is still worth a read. It's been a very infuential book to many and hasn't lost much of its impact over time.
Holly
Jun 13, 2016 Holly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful book with a serious flaw. That flaw is that its tone is most easily digested by people who agree with Singer from the beginning, which is confusing because Singer is so clearly trying to reach out to people who disagree with him. There are a couple instances where he does things like intentionally referring to "meat" as "flesh", which is understandable, but eventually detracts from his point. Although I see the value in reminding the audience what "meat" actually is, I see le ...more
Victoria Foote-blackman
Though much of what Singer covers in the way of data and animal rights theory has now been hashed over by many writers who have come after him, Animal Liberation is that seminal book that really got the movement on its tracks, whatever others want to say.

Some of his positions seem mainstream now but one must not forget how very radical he was back in 1973. In this manifesto Singer addressed two of the most egregious forms of animal abuse in some detail (the farming of animals and animal experime
...more
Alexandra Kulik
Aug 11, 2016 Alexandra Kulik rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
"The book that started a revolution" from the philosopher who started my intellectual exploration into species equality and my conversion into vegetarianism. I did not need to read this book to know that Singer's argument is impermeable, or that prejudice toward other species is unassailably on par with such unjustifiable discrimination as racism and sexism. That is, I did not need to read this because when I first heard Peter Singer talk about this in the documentary "Examined Life," and then s ...more
Andrew Georgiadis
Speciesism

Human beings are not the only creatures capable of suffering or having interests. Singer published this classic work to convince the lay reader of this self-evident argument back in the 1970s, and has commanded various updated editions, this most recent in 2002.

There are moral arguments to be made against the wholesale slaughter of cows, chickens, pigs, and other animals. The conditions in which they are now bred, especially in the United States, seems to maximize stress and suffering
...more
Sara
Jan 22, 2009 Sara rated it really liked it
Shelves: philosophy
Primarily a work of philosophy, Animal Liberation discusses human attitudes toward nonhumans (that is, animals) through examining our institutional and habitual treatment of them and uses to which we put them. This project obviously entails a discussion of animals as food and, more specifically, of our industrialized farming culture, though Peter Singer also chronicles the history of human attitudes toward nonhumans and the ways in which animals are used in medical, military and product testing. ...more
Ugh
Jun 03, 2009 Ugh rated it liked it
This book is very well written, and very well argued, but unfortunately it's let down a little by the fact that it's now rather dated. The three stars are based on a judgement of how relevant and effective the book was as of the date I read it, not on how influential it has been in the past. The philosophy is sophisticated, considered and accessible, although some of the points are slightly laboured. The second chapter on the use of animals in science is the biggest casualty of progress, and in ...more
Nathan
Aug 02, 2010 Nathan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: animal-rights
This book made me grateful for having cut my vegan teeth on abolitionist theory without first getting tangled up in this sort of watery utilitarian thinking. Apart from introducing the philosophically convenient (and I think accurate) concept of speciesism, this book presents little of real ethical value.

In fact, my complaint with this book is the same as my complaint with welfarism and utilitarian theories of animal ethics as a whole: it acknowledges the problem of animal abuse without strikin
...more
Claire
Jan 03, 2008 Claire rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Although Singer wrote Animal Liberation over twenty years ago, its message against speciesism is still relevant. He uses reason and logic to argue against our deeply-entrenched relationship to animals. He pulls down the veil and shows that our (ab)use of animals is not natural, not necessary, and not beneficial to either humans or the other animals. In the two painful chapters describing animal experimentation and factory farming, Singer uses only the researchers' and farmers' own descriptions o ...more
Triinu
Jan 23, 2010 Triinu rated it it was ok
This is not a book about animal rights but an utilitarian philosophy that barely touches the issue of animal welfare. Peter Singer doesn't claim that animals have an inherent value, therefore if you believe that your cat or pig has an interest in life (fx their will and capability to feel pain and joy won't not turn off when there comes time to consume them), I would recommend to read something by Gary Francione.
Maybe "Animal Liberation" had some points compared to the times it was written but
...more
Joe Sabet
Oct 25, 2015 Joe Sabet rated it it was amazing
Singer is a great writer, philosopher, and human being. I wasn't completely won over by his argument until the last chapter, where he really hits home and reinforces earlier discussions. I think he deserves tremendous credit for bringing due consideration in philosophy to nonhuman beings. Perhaps in a hundred or even two hundred years, when the distinction between humans and other species diminishes greatly, Singer will be celebrated by all philosophers and historians.
Stefani
Nov 18, 2009 Stefani rated it really liked it
I, like most people, prefer to mentally block out graphic images of cows and chickens, dangling upside-down, assembly-line style, while eating meat. I do consider myself a hypocrite, however, for not knowing the origins of that nicely organized package of meat I just bought at the grocery store. While this book is more of a philosophical contemplation on the morality of eating "flesh", I was pleasantly surprised to see an entire chapter devoted to factory farming. Singer describes, in frightenin ...more
K
Jul 13, 2013 K rated it it was amazing
Shelves: philosophy
Peter Singer creates powerful images by showing the real nature of animal experimentation and extensive farming. His principle of equal consideration of interests is incredibly convincing and impenetrable. The more I thought about it, the more sense it made to me. Despite his obvious utilitarian perspective on the matter, ALL counter-arguments are incredibly weak.

I've found out from my own personal experience, that many people get defensive when talking about these issues. It's as if we know we
...more
Maddie
Sep 28, 2010 Maddie rated it it was amazing
I read this for an Animal Rights paper I wrote against animal testing in 2008. Singer goes through all aspects of what goes on for the desires/needs of humans. The majority of the book was hard to grasp and read but if, even as you are reading this book, animals are going through just that then we can at least hear of their story. I have heard people say that they just don't understand vegans. Just because an animal is being "killed" for their meat doesn't mean they are living, beautiful healthy ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Case for Animal Rights
  • Meat Market: Animals, Ethics, & Money
  • Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy
  • Making A Killing: The Political Economy of Animal Rights
  • Farm Sanctuary: Changing Hearts and Minds About Animals and Food
  • Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking the Way We Treat Animals
  • Eternal Treblinka: Our Treatment of Animals and the Holocaust
  • Terrorists or Freedom Fighters?: Reflections on the Liberation of Animals
  • The Dreaded Comparison: Human and Animal Slavery
  • The Animal Activist's Handbook: Maximizing Our Positive Impact in Today's World
  • The Pig Who Sang to the Moon: The Emotional World of Farm Animals
  • Slaughterhouse: The Shocking Story of Greed, Neglect, And Inhumane Treatment Inside the U.S. Meat Industry
  • Introduction to Animal Rights: Your Child or the Dog?
  • Rattling The Cage: Toward Legal Rights For Animals
  • Strategic Action for Animals: A Handbook on Strategic Movement Building, Organizing, and Activism for Animal Liberation
  • Striking at the Roots: A Practical Guide to Animal Activism
  • The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory
  • Mad Cowboy: Plain Truth from the Cattle Rancher Who Won't Eat Meat
12397
Peter Albert David Singer is an Australian philosopher. He is the Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, and laureate professor at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics (CAPPE), University of Melbourne. He specializes in applied ethics, approaching ethical issues from a secular preference utilitarian perspective.

He has served, on two occasions, as chair of phil
...more
More about Peter Singer...

Share This Book



“To protest about bullfighting in Spain, the eating of dogs in South Korea, or the slaughter of baby seals in Canada while continuing to eat eggs from hens who have spent their lives crammed into cages, or veal from calves who have been deprived of their mothers, their proper diet, and the freedom to lie down with their legs extended, is like denouncing apartheid in South Africa while asking your neighbors not to sell their houses to blacks.” 134 likes
“If possessing a higher degree of intelligence does not entitle one human to use another for his or her own ends, how can it entitle humans to exploit non-humans?” 101 likes
More quotes…