Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer is an elucidation. And I barely ever read those. Not since those were mandatory in high school. The ones I read then were extremely boring. But Eating Animals is not boring at all. In fact, I think it’s the best book I’ve read about this subject so far. And that’s why I am sharing it today!
Eating Animals is a book about, well, eating animals. But this isn’t a 400-pages rant on why you should eat vegetarian. Safran Foer has written it with a very personal approach. He’s been struggling with the subject himself and in this book he writes about that journey. I’d say it’s mostly about ethics and personal believes and values. Why do we eat animals? Would we eat them if we know how they got onto our plates? Why do we eat some animals, but not all? But along with this philosophical approach he also approaches the subject with science, numbers and objectivity. Safran Foer debunks the insanity of what we’re doing on a daily basis. How we created a culture which normalizes eating animals and why. The book really shows you all aspects of eating animals.
“Just how destructive does a culinary preference have to be before we decide to eat something else? If contributing to the suffering of billions of animals that live miserable lives and (quite often) die in horrific ways isn’t motivating, what would be? If being the number one contributor to the most serious threat facing the planet (global warming) isn’t enough, what is? And if you are tempted to put off these questions of conscience, to say not now, then when?”Jonathan Safran Foer
My opinion is that this book should somehow be mandatory to everyone who eats animals. That’s because I feel like you can only make a good choice after you’ve read this book. Right now, we just do what culture tells us to do. We never think about eating animals. When I used to eat them, I never had a second thought about it. That’s insane! I was taking lives. Living beings died for me and I was at the same time destroying our planet. It’s easy to not think about eating animals in our society and that’s so wrong. It can be a choice of course, but we should make it individually. I don’t know why this book was never a mandatory book in high school, while instead I did have to read about a person who climbed into a painting and talked to insects (a very well-known Dutch book). I just don’t understand.
I read this book during a holiday with friends to Lloret de Mar. You’d think I’d have no time on such a holiday, but this really shows how good the book was and how it got me hooked. We did spend 24-hours on the bus towards it, but I read along the whole holiday. This book is an absolute must-read! I am even considering reading it again anytime soon. And a little sustainable tip: lend the book at your local library, this way you don’t have to buy anything new!