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Animals Erased: Discourse, Ecology, and Reconnection with the Natural World

4 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0819572325
ISBN-10: 0819572322
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Amazingly clear and incisive readings of a wide range of discourses related to animals and ecology. With an impressive eye for detail and the ‘big picture,’ Stibbe gives real insights into the relationship between language, values, and actions.” (Karla Armbruster, coeditor of Beyond Nature Writing)

“Those of us of cultures of the land―both working with and, yes, consuming animals―will applaud Arran Stibbe’s analysis of the loss of soul when right relationship is discarded.” (Alastair McIntosh, Centre for Human Ecology, and author of Soil and Soul)

About the Author

Arran Stibbe is a reader in ecological linguistics at the University of Gloucestershire. He is the founder of the Language and Ecology Research Forum (www.ecoling.net).
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Wesleyan (April 6, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0819572322
  • ISBN-13: 978-0819572325
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,281,463 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Arran Stibbe's book is a wonderful eye-opener because it shows us in detail and with admirable precision how the way we talk about animals shapes and determines our mental concepts about them - and this in term influences our stances on what we feel is acceptable or unacceptable treatment of animals. I particularly liked his close look at environmental and animal rights discourses. His analysis here shows that theses uses of language very often reproduce destructive mental concepts of animals.
The only reservation I have about the book is that it doesn't clearly illuminate the connection between language and action. Language use and mental concepts of animals are not identical with our actions towards animals. And only if we clearly understand this interaction can we substantially change the way we treat animals in real life. Analogies between language use / mental concepts and current treatment of animals is not enough here, because you can easily change language use without changing real-life behaviour (see mixed effects of mainstreaming gender-sensitive language).
But even so, Stibbe's analysis that we have not only modelled our language use in ways to make our treatment of say factory farm animals seem acceptable, but also that we more or less lost real life contact with animals, is insightful in so many ways, that it deserves to be read by anybody who still knows what an animal is.
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