Minding Animals

Minding Animals : Awareness, Emotions, and Heart

3.85 (67 ratings by Goodreads)
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Minding Animals is concerned not only with the study of animal behaviour, but also with the innumerable ways in which humans interact with and intrude into the lives of our animal kin. The phrase "minding animals" is used in two ways. First, "minding animals" refers to caring for other animal beings, respecting them for who they are, appreciating their own world views, and wondering what and how they are feeling and why. The second meaning refers to the fact that many animals have very active and thoughtful minds. Throughout, the animals' point of view is stressed, based on the author's more than three decades of experience with a variety of animals. Minding Animals is a broad comparative, evolutionary, and ecological work that does not centre on nonhuman primates of one specific group of animals. After introducing himself in the field of ethology, the biological study of animal behaviour, Bekoff discusses behaviour patterns such as predatory behaviour, grooming and gossip, what animals know about what others know, self-medication, dreaming, sperm wars, and mate choice. The also discusses animal intelligence, emotions, and the evolution of social morality. The final chapters deal with the nature of human interactions with animals - how we use them for education, research, clothing, and food, and how we "redecorate" nature by moving animals from one place to another. Bekoff argues that we need more socially responsible and compassionate science to make progress solving the problems that we have created. He concludes that love is the answer and that we must connect with and love other animals, other humans, and all environments if we are to continue to live in harmony on this wondrous and interconnected planet.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 163.1 x 243.8 x 24.1mm | 562.46g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 7 halftones, 1 figure and 1 line drawing
  • 0195150775
  • 9780195150773

Review quote

"To find out about the rich emotional life of nonhuman species, read Minding Animals."--Natural History"A book with both brains and a heart.... Bekoff joins courageous figures such as the anthropologist Frans de Waal and the maverick biologist Rupert Sheldrake in their attempt to make humans recognise and respect non-human animals' complex sentient and emotional lives."--Sunday Telegraph"With this abundant narrative of Marc Bekoff a new age of intimacy between humans and animals has begun. The companionship, the play, the healing, the guidance, the protection provided by the animals, all these will be needed in the future as never before. Everyone should read Minding Animals, an amazingly thorough, delightful, and most important book." --Thomas Berry, author of The Dream of the Earth and The Great Work"For those of us who have immersed ourselves in the well being of life forms other than human, the fact that they communicate and have feelings is as natural and understandable as breathing. Through this lens we see clearly how their well being is intricately interconnected with our own. In Minding Animals Marc Bekoff has done a wonderful job of showing us how learning to understand and 'mind' animals and their behavior leads us to recognize their feelings as well. Through their layers, we find even more richness and joy of life as we glimpse into ever deepe parts of ourselves. This book is fun, inspiring, thought-provoking and educational! What a great mix!" --Julia Butterfly Hill, author of The Legacy of Luna: The Story of a Tree, a Woman, and the Struggle to Save the Redwoods"Just as the best doctors attain detailed and compassionate knowledge of the uniqueness of each patient, so too do the best behavioral biologists--with Marc Bekoff prominently among them--learn to recognize each animal as a distinct individual with its own internal life and experiences. By minding animals, we obtain our best scientific understanding of their evolution and behavior." --Stephen Jay Gould, author of The Structure of Evolutionary Theory"Except for relatively minor specializations that relate to whether we walk, run, fly or swim, all we vertebrate animals are physically stunningly similar. Most would also agree that the brain is an organ, as are stomachs, kidneys, and hearts, designed with functions and capacities useful for survival in often complex and indirect ways. There is no evidence, however, that what the brain does differs fundamentally across various species of vertebrates. Differences are in degree with respect to specific functions. In this readable, wide-ranging, and very stimulating book, Marc Bekoff takes this larger holistic view as a basis for a passionate exploration of how we should treat, and what we owe, our fellow-vertebrate creatures, who likely have many emotional and sensory survival mechanisms similar to our own." --Bernd Heinrich, University of Vermont, author of Mind of the Ravenshow more

About Marc Bekoff

Marc Bekoff is Professor of Biology at the Unviersity of Colorado, Boulder, and is a fellow of the Animal Behavior Society and a former Guggenheim Fellow. He was recently awarded the Exemplar Award from the Animal Behavior Society for major long-term contributions to the field of animal behavior. Marc is also the regional coordinator for Jane Goodall's Roots & Shoots programme. He and Jane have recently co-founded the organization Ethologists for the Ethical Treatment of Animals: Citizens for Responsible Animal Behavior Studies (www.ethologicalethics.com). Marc is also on the Advisory Board for the conservation organization, SINAPU, and in part of the international programme, Science and the Spiritual Quest II.show more

Table of contents

Foreword ; Preface ; 1. Chasing coyotes and moving "yellow snow" ; 2. Representing and misrepresenting animals ; 3. The richness of behavioral diversity: a potpourri of animal behavior ; 4. Animal minds and what's in them ; 5. Animal emotions: passionate natures and animal feelings ; 6. Play, cooperation, and the evolution of social morality: foundations of fairness ; 7. Animal welfare, animal rights, and animal protection ; 8. Human intrusions into animals' lives ; 9. Science, nature, and heart: minding animals and redecorating nature ; 10. Animals, theology, spirituality, and loveshow more

Rating details

67 ratings
3.85 out of 5 stars
5 28% (19)
4 37% (25)
3 27% (18)
2 6% (4)
1 1% (1)
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