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Animal Liberation

4.18  ·  Rating Details ·  4,580 Ratings  ·  326 Reviews
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 Peter Singer exposes the chilling rea ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published January 1st 1990 by Random House, Inc. (first published 1975)
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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
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
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
Jul 01, 2007 beggs rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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 ([]). You can blame all of the illogical stupidity of [] 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
Ross Blocher
Dec 30, 2012 Ross Blocher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Feb 16, 2016 Annie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Michael Bennett
Nov 04, 2011 Michael Bennett rated it it was amazing
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
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.
Jul 19, 2012 Eva rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Jack Ferreira
Sep 30, 2012 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.

Sep 19, 2013 Sancho rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
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.
Sep 02, 2012 Quinn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Jan 23, 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
Feb 29, 2016 Fredrik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
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.
Jun 10, 2015 Kara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
will be talking about this book on my channel soon! but in short, it was amazing, intelligent, and life changing.
Larry Bassett
I listen to this book because it was a classic and probably contributed in ordinately to the attention that the Animal liberation movement has received since the book was first published in 1975. The author Peter Singer is a philosopher so this book is somewhat unique in presenting the issues from a philosophical point of view.

The book has been updated several times and the audible addition was just created in 2015. But I think the book still suffers somewhat from being out of date. But I am gla
Luke Jenner
Nov 28, 2016 Luke Jenner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Singer articulates the value of his field succinctly towards the end of this brilliant book: "Philosophy ought to question the basic assumptions of the age. Thinking through, critically and carefully, what most of us take for granted is, I believe, the chief task of philosophy, and the task makes philosophy a worthwhile activity."

I've been a vegetarian for 3 years after being shocked by learning the process and cruelty involved in meat getting to my plate. That said, I hadn't fully considered th
An important book filled with facts and rational arguments that will make you squirm. All people should read it, especially those interested in ethics and personal consistency. Unfortunately, Singer's dry writing style at time reduces the impact of his message. The first half in particular is a slog, but a worthy one.
Jan 09, 2009 Sara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Jan 04, 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
Cristiane Bonezzi
Nov 07, 2016 Cristiane Bonezzi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
La réflexion morale à propos des droits des animaux a beaucoup évolué dès les années 1970. Peter Singer, philosophe australien né en 1946, titulaire de la chaire de bioéthique à Princeton University, est considéré le philosophe le plus influant sur ce sujet. Son livre « La libération animale », paru en 1975, était un des premiers à discuter exclusivement de l’éthique et le statut moral des animaux. L’éthique animale est l’étude de la responsabilité morale des humains à l’égard des animaux, le qu ...more
Andrew Georgiadis

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
Alexandra Kulik
Aug 10, 2014 Alexandra Kulik rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
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
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
Dec 31, 2007 Claire rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Jun 03, 2009 Ugh rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Jan 23, 2010 Triinu rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
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
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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
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“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.” 150 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?” 108 likes
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