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My current reads



I've declared my love for reading here in the past (here and here) but, I'm here to talk about books again!


I am currently reading 2 books, Animals' Rights, Considered in Relation to Social Progress by Henry S. Salt and Bram Stoker's Dracula (I know, I too, can't believe I'm just getting to it now.)


Animals' Rights was originally written in 1892 but this version I have is from 1980 and includes a forward by Peter Singer (listen to his podcast episode here).


One of the things that surprised me, given the book was written in 1892, is the author's approach to intersectionality. Today, in 2024, there are some who feel each social justice issue is its own separate thing and we need to focus only on the one we've declared it most important to us and allow others to take up what matters to them and that these issues do not touch each other. In 1892, Salt knew that could not be true.


"That this weakness is often observable among "philanthropists" on one hand, and "friends of animals" on the other, and most of all among those acute "men of the world," whose regard is only for themselves, I am not concerned to deny; what I wish to point out is the only real safeguard against sentimentality is to take up a consistent position towards the rights of men and of the lower animals alike, and to cultivate a broad sense of universal justice (not "mercy") for all living things."

He also pushes back on the idea that we're doing the animals who we use and abuse a favor. Which, believe it or not, is a thought still held today by many. Even those who identify as animal lovers or who live with dogs or cats who they call part of their family will insist that if we didn't eat farm animals they would cease to exist or that they need us to keep them safe....


"We have taken the animals from a free, natural state, into an artificial thraldom, in order that we, and not they, may be the gainers thereby; it cannot possibly be maintained that they owe us gratitude on this account..."


As I read this book I am excited that someone so long ago was writing about this and at the same time also upset that we didn't change our relationship with animals before it became the hellscape it is today.


I'm looking forward to writing another blog about this book once I've finished it, stay tuned!


I had already gone vegetarian when I read Peter Singer's Animal Liberation but it was absolutely one of the things that kept me rooted in my motivation to remain vegetarian and later vegan. Tell me in the comments about a book that changed your perspective and helped you see some aspect of life in a new way.

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Guest
Apr 03

I love to read book blog posts to see what others are reading, and I am always adding to my TBR list! I have never read Dracula, but I need to read it. I thought I would never like Frankenstein, yet I was fascinated by it and glad I read it!

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Guest
Apr 03

What a fascinating peek into your reads! Salt's take on animal rights from 1892 still rings true today, huh? And that bit about animals not owing us gratitude for how we treat them? It's like a wake-up call wrapped in a historical context. Tamara

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Guest
Apr 03

That is great! I tend to reread Dracula every few years or so. Was thinking this morning that I should pick it up again. One time I am going to just read a journal entry on the day. Which would mean I need to start it on May 3.

--

Tim Brannan, The Other Side blog

<a href="https://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/">2024 A to Z of Dungeons & Dragons, Celebrating 50 Years of D&D</a>


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Replying to

I love the idea of reading a journal entry on the day, what a way to transport yourself into the story!

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