**spoiler alert** I don't think that I am capable of writing a review that does justice to the profound importance and shattering potency of this book...more**spoiler alert** I don't think that I am capable of writing a review that does justice to the profound importance and shattering potency of this book. It is a devastatingly honest book that amazingly manages to be horrifying and hopeful at the same time. I urgently, desperately recommend this book to everyone, but I warn you, it is not an easy book to read.
--SPOILER WARNING (and the book is so damn good)--
Ostensibly, this book is about interspecies communication, but Jensen cuts very deep when he begins to illuminate what should be immediately obvious, that if animals could talk they would almost universally speak of generations of cruelty, genocide, and pain like a thousand Holocausts stretching back through the centuries.
Drawing on his childhood experiences of sexual and physical abuse, Jensen illustrates how our relationship with the rest of life on Earth is very much a relationship of domination and abuse. He then explores the psychology of abuse to explain how we, as abusers must deafen ourselves to the world around us in order to continue violating it.
Jensen doesn't take the easy way out by asserting that humans are tragically, irrevocably flawed, but he also doesn't presume to know "The Solution" to our problems. Rather, he argues that there is nothing we can all do to fix this. However we move forward, it must be with the painful and deliberate consciousness that we are perpetrators of the violent abuse of our fellow humans and the rest of life on this planet. From that point, we have to confront the social, economic, political, cultural, and ideological systems that facilitate the continuation of this violence with the urgency such an unspeakable crime demands. Since the front lines are everywhere, we must confront them everywhere, devising creative, unique, and powerful responses to them all. Piecemeal patchwork fixes will accomplish nothing. Recycling and energy efficient vehicles do not stop the abuse, they just put a smiley face on it.(less)