“Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat” by Hal Herzog

Have you ever questioned our relationship with animals? For example, why do we love some animals, like our family pets, but find it perfectly alright to kill and eat others? In the book, Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat: Why It’s So Hard to Think Straight About Animals Mr. Herzog a leading scientist in the emerging field of anthrozoology, presents several interesting quandries about our human and animal interactions.

Anthrozoology studies the relationship between humans and animals. His book shares several scientific studies and of course, personal anecdotes about meat eating, pet owning, animal research, and other human-animal interactions. The book starts off the exploration of the topic with a bang! The question is posed, is it wrong to feed kittens to a pet boa constrictor? And shockingly, there are statistics which would make it sound perfectly fine to do just that. Why then is the thought so repulsive when feeding a pet boa constrictor mice and rats is not?

While the book doesn’t spell out an answer about our relationship with animals, it does get the mind thinking. The author even points to famed natrualist Charles Darwin, who was not happy about having to harm the animals he loved, but did so out of need for his scientific study. Darwin even wrote about one of his pigeons, “I have done the black deed and murdered the angelic little Fan-tail Pointer at 10 days old.” (page 208)

This is a very interesting read, with many insights into our complex relationships with animals. Herzog does a great job at exploring all the psychological, biological, and cultural reasons for the complexity. He draws on over two decades worth of research into the topic, and presents it all in what is actually a very entertaining read! And while there is not one clear conclusion as to why “it’s so hard to think straight about animals”, there are certainly several interesting reasons that will set your mind thinking about it!

To learn more about the author please visit Hal’s website and his blog at Psychology Today, Animals and Us.

This entry was posted in books.

One comment

  1. Daniel Esteban says:

    Thanks for addressing the article to the public eye. Wish more would take notice of the article.
    This is my thought on why we love some animals:
    Why we love some animals before other have to do with the fact that some animals appeal to us than others and are more close to our personality than others. For example I choose to have a dog because he is the companion I need and the friend that will always be with me no matter what, and because I admire the ability of the dog, extreme senses, hearing and smell and that they are better than us humans in every aspect. But I wouldn’t be getting a turtle or a snake when they don’t appeal to me in any way.

    Daniel Esteban

    The Live life Project.

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