Animals in Translation: The Woman Who Thinks Like a Cow

Animals in Translation: The Woman Who Thinks Like a Cow

Book rating: 03 Paperback

By (author) Temple Grandin

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  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Format: Paperback | 368 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 194mm x 24mm | 281g
  • Publication date: 1 May 2006
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0747566690
  • ISBN 13: 9780747566694
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New edition
  • Sales rank: 20,859

Product description

"Animals in Translation" is the culmination of Temple Grandin's extraordinary life's work, drawing upon the latest research, her distinguished career as an animal scientist and her own experience of being autistic. With co-author Catherine Johnson, Grandin argues that while 'normal people' convert experience into words and abstractions, animals and autistics process the world as sensory information - specific pictures, sights and sounds. This difference is the key to understanding how animals see, think and feel. As much a revelation about life with autism as it is about life with animals, "Animals in Translation" explores pain, fear, aggression, love, friendship, communication and learning in a startling book that will change the way you think about animals.

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Author information

Temple Grandin is an associate professor of animal science at Colorado State University. She was the subject of the famous New Yorker profile by Oliver Sacks, 'An Anthropologist on Mars'.

Customer reviews

By Mark Thwaite 10 Dec 2008 3

Dr Temple Grandin is something of a phenomenon. A designer of livestock handling facilities and an Associate Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University, Temple is probably best known for her groundbreaking autobiography Emergence. A highly intelligent child, but unable to express herself clearly or control her behaviour, Temple was diagnosed with autism at the age of three. Emergence details her valiant struggle to understand herself and her condition and has been used ever since to help doctors understand the autistic mind. But Temple herself has gone on to live a highly unusual life using her own self-understanding to get inside the mind of animals. In Animals in Translation Temple demonstrates that while non-autistic humans convert experience into words and abstractions, animals and autistics process the world as sensory information -- potential sensory overload and fear dominate their consciousness. This is a fascinating book, with perhaps one overriding irony: whilst Temple may be "The Woman Who Thinks Like a Cow" (the title of a BBC TV Horizon documentary about her life and work) her research into modern methods of livestock handling is simply directed towards killing animals more efficiently and on an ever larger scale.

Review quote

'This magisterial book on animal behaviour is unique and, for me, is gripping reading ... fascinating ... Grandin is the modern day Doctor Dolittle who does not have any mystical telepathy with animals - she is simply an extremely experienced, sharp observer and careful scientist who has isolated the principles that govern animal behaviour. We owe her a huge debt for having used her autistic obsession (into animals) and her autistic perception (for accurate details) to teach us so much' Simon Baron-Cohen, Guardian 'This is a wonderful book by an amazing woman - a woman whose understanding of animals is very special. What's more, she not only understands them, she also puts her knowledge to practical use' Desmond Morris, Daily Mail 'She may well have done more for animal welfare than anyone else in recent history ... a cross between a memoir, a layperson's guide to autism and a how-to guide to animal welfare ... we have much to learn' Sunday Telegraph 'An extraordinary book Even if you don't run a farm or own a pet, you have to read this book. It will change the way you think about animals, about autism, about yourself' Mail on Sunday