"If you only read one book this summer, make it this one."--Equus Magazine
"The Gospel of Kindness brilliantly chronicles the growth of American animal protectionism from the Civil War to the onset of World War II. Janet Davis examines shifts in the concern for the treatment of animals in the context of the great social movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries-Protestant revivalism, the abolition and temperance movements, and international expansionism. From the origins of urban animal shelters to conflicts over bullfighting in Texas, this is the definitive history of an important yet neglected chapter in the development of the animal welfare movement in the United States."--Hal Herzog, author of Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat: Why It Is So Hard To Think Straight About Animals
"A breakthrough work in historical scholarship concerning the humane movement and concern for animals. Davis forges new ground in her illumination of a transnational animal protection ethic and her analysis of its meaning and significance both within and outside the United States. The Gospel of Kindness is a work of tremendous relevance for a contemporary world in which animal protection values are spreading more deeply and ever farther."--Bernard Unti, author of Protecting All Animals: A Fifty-Year History of The Humane Society of the United States
"The Gospel of Kindness shows how champions of animal welfare in the United States repeatedly framed their advocacy within the language of US benevolence and uplift. Well-written and thoroughly researched, Davis's fine history of the US animal protection movement, global in scope, illuminates the contested politics of empire, citizenship, gender, race, and religion."--Emily S. Rosenberg, author of Transnational Currents in a Shrinking World, 1870-1945
About the Author
Janet M. Davis is Associate Professor of American Studies, History, and Women's and Gender Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She is the author of The Circus Age: Culture and Society under the American Big Top, as well as the editor of Circus Queen and Tinker Bell: The Life of Tiny Kline. Her opinion pieces have been published in the New York Times and Newsday.