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Making A Killing: The Political Economy of Animal Rights Paperback – November 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 185 pages
  • Publisher: AK Press (November 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904859674
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904859673
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #833,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Bob Torres is assistant professor of sociology at St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY, USA, where he teaches courses on social theory, globalization, political economy, and animal rights. Coauthor of the vegan how-to guide, Vegan Freak: Being Vegan in a Non-Vegan World, Bob also publishes scholarly literature on topics around globalization, food, and the social implications of technology.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 13 customer reviews
It is obvious that this book is well-researched and well-written.
S. Moore
Anyone hoping to understand animal rights, abolitionism, Marxism and anarchism will be delighted by this smart and readable book.
A. Sernatinger
He makes a great argument for the hypocrisy of liberalism if it does not include animal advocacy in its agenda.
lonebeaut

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 54 people found the following review helpful By A. Sernatinger on November 19, 2007
Format: Paperback
Making a Killing is the book I've been waiting for since I went vegan five years ago. First and foremost, Torres demonstrates that animal exploitation is not merely a consumer problem, but is part of an integrated social system based on hierarchy and domination. Through a clear and accessible introduction to Marxist political economy, Torres discusses animals through the logic of commodity forms and puts forth a set of flexible and empowering guidelines to abolish animal exploitation through an anarchist interpretation of Gary Francione's abolitionist framework.

Furthermore, Torres discusses the issues with contemporary anarchism and social justice politics, suggesting that to take equality seriously we must recognize animal subjectivity and fight for their liberation. In his use of Murray Bookchin's libertarian philosophy, aptly named 'social ecology', Torres makes the case for animals based on the anarchist critique of hierarchy and power.

Making A Killing is an excellent, entertaining read with an ambitious call for a serious reworking of our understanding of the animal rights movement based on social justice and democracy. Anyone hoping to understand animal rights, abolitionism, Marxism and anarchism will be delighted by this smart and readable book.
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22 of 27 people found the following review helpful By T. Palenski on December 28, 2007
Format: Paperback
Before I read this book, I couldn't really say why I was a vegan. I mean, I could rattle off various problems I had with the suffering that animals endured, the health and environmental benefits, etc. Torres's book provided the theoretical support for my personal veganism. It was a revelation. I had never really considered veganism as a way to reject the capitalism-induced hierarchy that plagues society today. I never really understood what it meant to be vegan. In fact, I wasn't entirely vegan. I wavered quite a bit, knowing somewhere, deep down, that eating animal products was wrong. Making a Killing synthesized it all for me.

The writing is direct and informative. Torres draws from a wide variety of sources. And while the writing is still a bit unpolished, all writing is a work in progress. That said, Torres ties together well the various social justice movements and provides a critical analysis of the animal rights movement today.

For me, this book changed my perspective on animal rights and what it means to be a vegan.
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Stephen on October 14, 2010
Format: Paperback
Are you interested in reading about Marxist theory or the writings of Murray Bookchin and Gary Francione? If so, this book is for you. You'll encounter pages and pages of Marxist theory interrupted by pages of explaining what other authors have written. Details on animals fall in between, many of which, such as those on factory farming, you can read in most other animal rights books. Perhaps this describes what other reviewers wanted because frankly I'm amazed at the amount of 5 star reviews. It's not that I disagree with the message in the book or many of its observations, it's just that it has flaws. These override any desire I have as an animal-rights advocate to unequivocally champion it.

One of the flaws is that it is annoyingly repetitive. That's what you tend to get if someone is peddling a thin argument. It can also happen with books done in what I call "template academia" style, in which you take a theory as your template and apply your issue to it. Torres explains the template, then steps back and says, See this? It works the same for animals. There is only so much you can take "to understand the inequality and hierarchy between species, and to shed light on the constant oppression of animals in our society." OK, we got it. We got it several pages back. Too often, many of Torres' proclamations do not need a theory, anyway. They might be arrived at through plain observation. And I cringe when seeing the word "bourgeois" used--its seems quite worn-out as far as words go. Less template and more direct focus on animal rights is what I would have liked--after all, animal rights is in the title.

I wondered if I found it repetitive because I was familiar with a lot of the theory behind it.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A. Puckett on December 31, 2007
Format: Paperback
As a committed listener to the "VeganFreak Radio Podcast" and vegan myself, ever since Bob Torres, the author of Making a Killing a political economy of animal right , made it obvious to the listeners of his and his wifes' Podcast that he was working on a book I become eager to purchase and read his only solo documentation of animal rights. Being a professor, Torres shows a sense of very well researched and expanded upon ideas within the book all revolving around the main reason for the book, animal rights. He takes everything from the most commercialized concepts to the smaller ideas behind closed doors and expands upon their deeper sociological meanings to help provide insight to the reader on all sides of the mostly horrible animal agriculture in this country, and all over the world for the most part. His highly articulated commitment to the welfare of animals comes across boldly within every section of this book, commenting on many of the well known activists articles of literature and explaining their importance to the reader. Describing the animals, viewed from a pure profit stand-point, as being exploited and simple commodities, not the living beings that they are. These "commodities" being parallel to a companion animal, being a dog or a cat most commonly. Overall this book opens ones eyes about the truths of the horrific animal agriculture, and slaps articulated and rich words on top of the commonly looked past ideas behind all aspects of the world of animal rights. From both a political stand point and sociological stand point this book presses important issues that should be realized by all americans who care about the welfare of living beings on earth, and have an interest in anarchist ideas related to animal rights.
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