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Anarchism and Animal Liberation: Essays on Complementary Elements of Total Liberation

Published Date: July 6, 2015

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Edited by Anthony J. Nocella II, Richard White, and Erika Cudworth
Published 2015
McFarland Books
Building upon anarchist critiques of racism, sexism, ableism and classism, this collection of new essays melds anarchism with animal advocacy in arguing that speciesism is an ideological and social norm rooted in hierarchy and inequality. Rising from the anarchist-influenced Occupy Movement, this book brings together international scholars and activists from the fields of anarchist and critical animal studies. The contributors challenge activists and academics to look more critically into the causes of speciesism and to take a broader view of peace, social justice and the nature of oppression. Animal advocates have long argued that speciesism will end if the humanity adopts a vegan ethic. This concept is developed into the argument that the vegan ethic promises the most change if it is also anti-capitalist and against all forms of domination.

Anarchism and Animal Liberation is an excellent and timely and diverse collection of academic-activist voices making the case for a world where compassion is extended to all species, and there is freedom from oppression, domination, capitalism, and government.

– Sarat Colling, Transnational anarcho-vegan feminist writer and activist

As a grassroots organizer trying to help mobilize people across cultural and other divides, I find Animal Liberation and Anarchism to be quite timely and highly relevant to my work. Avoiding reinforcement of arbitrary hierarchy in our campaigns and communities is imperative, but daunting, and discussion of the issues raised here seems a perfect starting point for figuring out together how to build truly non-oppressive organizations and communities.

– Reyna Crow, Idle No More Movement, Duluth

“We need a book like this that includes fellow animals (their lives and freedoms) when critiquing oppressive structures and actively promoting a transformation to a more just and sustainable society (one that respects the unique perspectives of a diversity of beings, including human diversity, yet without automatically privileging human interests). It calls for us to go beyond personal change (like veganism) to socio-political change so we are engaged collectively as citizens not just individual consumers.”

– Dr. Carrie P. Freeman, author of Framing Farming: Communication Strategies for Animal Rights

Anarchism and Animal Liberation brings together a powerful set of essays which comprehensively examine activist perspectives in critical animal studies. It also calls us to think critically about our complicity in oppression, issuing a compelling demand for solidarity and total liberation.

– Dr. Ruth Kinna, Loughborough University

“Radical”: a desire to attack the root of a problem. As Thoreau put it, “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.” This radical book strikes a strong blow against various isms, archies, and oppressions. Anarchism and Animal Liberation is intersectional social justice at its best. It is, indeed, a Haymarket bomb for other animals and the Earth. Read Anarchism and Animal Liberation to learn how you can do the same. Read and take action for total liberation!

– Dr. Joel Helfrich, Hobart & William Smith Colleges

Humanity cannot be free while animals are caged, abused, tortured and led to the slaughter bench. At this perilous historical moment when human and animal suffering have intensified beyond the imagination we need to take the path of total liberation. Animal Liberation and Anarchism reminds us of our mission by articulating a vision of total liberation within the traditions of critical animal studies and anarchism. It is a must-read book that demands our immediate attention.

– Dr. Peter McLaren, Distinguished Professor of Critical Studies, Chapman University

I remember a time, not so long ago, when many of our best activists just didn’t think about how their struggle was allied with other movements. Thankfully, due in-part to the work of authors here in Animal Liberation and Anarchism, that memory seems to be fading. Today, our struggles are increasingly drawing inspiration from and acting in solidarity with other movements, which is dangerously revolutionary.

– Leslie James Pickering, author of Mad Bomber Melville

The discussion in “Anarchism and Animal Liberation: Critical Animal Studies, Intersectionality and Total Liberation” makes important connections between different struggles against domination, reminding us that no one is free until everyone is free. Critically thinking about the issues of sexism, racism, ageism, ableism, speciesism and the ways that they are connected is an important step in the struggle to end their oppression.

– Nick Ryan, Co-Owner, Strong Hearts Cafe

The connection between anarchism and animal liberation seems a natural one and the editors of this book should be commended for kicking off the stimulating debates that will surely follow this interesting collection.

– Dr. John Sorenson, Department of Sociology, Brock University

Anarchism and Animal Liberation traverses the fascinating intersections of critical animal studies, political theory, veganism, punk culture, anti-patriarchy, prison abolition and more. This book will be especially valuable in an educational setting. Most of us come from one or another of these liberation movements (or we teach courses on one or another of these themes), but it is time that we and our students start to see the links between these movements. Solidarity is the answer to the revolutionary question.

– Dr. Tanya Loughead, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Canisius College and author of Critical University


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