Beasts of Burden by Sunaura Taylor

Beasts of Burden

A beautifully written, deeply provocative inquiry into the intersection of animal and disability liberation—and the debut of an important new social criticHow much of what we understand of ourselves as “human” depends on our physical and mental abilities—how we move (or cannot move) in and interact with the world? And how much of our definition of “human” depends on its difference from “animal”?Drawing on her own experiences as a ...

Details Beasts of Burden

TitleBeasts of Burden
Release DateMar 7th, 2017
PublisherThe New Press
GenreDisability, Nonfiction, Animals, Food and Drink, Vegan, Social Movements, Social Justice, Disability Studies

Reviews Beasts of Burden

  • Corvus
    This book is spectacular. Carol Adams told me about this book about a year before it came out when I was talking to her at a conference. I mentioned that I don't know a lot of people who write about the intersection of disability and animal liberation and she told me that "Beasts of Burden" was in the works. I also read Sunaura Taylor's contribution to the Ecofeminism anthology which completely rocked my world. From that point forward, I eagerly ...
  • Kate Savage
    Sunaura Tayler 'crips' animal liberation and critiques speciesist trends in ableism. The result is beautiful.I've never encountered such a thoughtful, caring critical theory about other species. Those who care about other species need this: we need new ways to think about dependence and worth. I don't want to slide into that eco-theory that hates all domesticated beasts for being dependent. I don't want to slide into that veganism that idolizes t...
  • Ireene
    Wow, I learned so much from this book and realised that I have so much more to learn. A must read for sure!
  • Madeline
    Wow! Yes!
  • Jess
    Having read little on either of these topics, it was super informative and engaging - addresses intersectionally the shortcomings of veganism as a “lifestyle” (horrible working conditions for produce farm workers, white yogis, food deserts in low income/black neighborhoods, etc) and a lot of eye opening info on “scientific measures of intelligence” that determine how we treat which animals that disqualify differently abled/neuroatypical p...
  • Stacie
    This was so, so good.
  • Andrew
    Absolutely necessary, approachable, and nuanced interrogation of the way ableism and speciesism interconnect in assumptions of value, labour, self-determination, and ethical consideration.
  • Katherine Ripley
    Fantastic! I have already been vegan for 2 years, but reading this book helped me to confront my ableism, whether it was informing some of my views on animal liberation, or just operating in every day life. Taylor’s argument is well-written, coherent, and powerful.
  • Heather
    I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I checked this book out. I had been interested in it thanks to a promotional article shared with me about a year or so ago, but since my background for the subject material was a single college-level survey of disability studies and maybe seeing some clips of Food, Inc. in high school, I could imagine the analysis getting away from me very fast.Once I started, though, it was hard to stop. I was fascinated! ...
  • Corey Wrenn
    One of the most important books ever to be written on intersectional veganism. This book covers the basics of disability and animal rights (such as the problematic cognitive arguments often made to promote animal rights and the problems with using disability to justify vivisection), making it appropriate for the novice. It also explores some of the more nuanced issues. The chapter challenging the negative portrayal of dependency (a quality that a...
  • B.V. Buntin
    Sunaura Taylor's Beasts of Burden dives deep into the intersectional oppressions of the disability community and animals. The human/animal binary that is so ingrained within us contributes to forms of human oppression alongside animal oppression. Taylor takes on big names like Peter Singer, Michael Pollan, and Temple Grandin, demonstrating how their arguments in support of animal exploitation (or even against it) draw from ideas about disability ...
  • Marcus Ogle Luta
    I applaud Sunaura’s ability at making this an accessible reading and I also believe this to be an important book. I felt hesitant the entire time I read this book believing that I would eventually run into something that would ruin my experience with this book for me. However- Sunaura surprised me by not demonstrating any of the problematic things I feared reading a book by a middle-class white vegan womxn. With that being said, something that ...
  • E.F.
    A strikingly concise and insightful work of urgent importance. Connecting multiple movements toward a framework for social justice, Taylor's criticisms of the shortcomings of theoretical thinking about movements for animal justice reveal the profoundly ableist assumptions at work in much of that work while establishing a new framework that brilliantly re-imagines vulnerability, interdependence, and community. by reframing conversations of ability...
  • Sdubby
    I really enjoyed this book, Sunaura Taylor has a lot of great references and did an excellent job researching the information and backing up her opinions. She did a great job of explaining the similarities and differences with the animal welfare movement and disability rights and activism. The author brought up a lot of good questions about both topics, and exposed some flaws in logic and reasoning that other people have. My one criticism of this...
  • Bobby
    It's not an easy thing to do, but I believe that Sunaura Taylor pulled off what she set out to do: to show a link between our attitude toward animals and our attitude toward the disabled. I came away from this book with an increased perspective on animal liberation but also increased compassion for the disabled and how society's biases (carnism and ableism) taint our perspectives on animals and the disabled alike. By the time I was done, it seeme...
  • tris
    everyone should read this. tbh, i could have used a whole book branching off of the "freak of nature" chapter. biggest overall complaint is probably that it just didn't.....go hard enough, feeling mostly like food for thought rather than trying to dissect and dismantle opposing lines of thought - but not everyone wants to write that book. it certainly wasn't ineffectual in terms of argumentation, and managed to maybe turn me around on my views on...
  • Cat
    A whole new perspective on the underlying frameworks underpinning disability and domesticated animals. The writing style and organization left a lot to be desired.
  • Ian
    Was not expecting the author to have a go at Temple Grandin's nonsense, but boy was i happy for it.
  • G.B. Gabbler
    A Gabbler Recommends.
  • Dayton
    It's perhaps not surprising that this challenged and expanded my thinking on (dis)ability, something I haven't (yet!) read much about. But it did the same for my thinking on animals (human and nonhuman), illuminating under-covered aspects of their oppression and altering how I understand domestication and dependency. The book is essential reading for anyone interested in building a just society--in the animal or disability movements as well as th...
  • Shelby barker
    life changingthis book literally changed how i view disability activism and animal rights activism in a way i have never experienced. i am a disabled vegan and yet i never knew how little i knew. this book is a great read and it references many books that also sound interesting. i will re read and i recommended it to my professors
  • Pandaduh
    This book was an eye-opener. This is, so far, the only Disability Liberation work I’ve ever read. I brought a lot of biases and assumptions to the table and am leaving with a greater understanding of my ableism–including within how I conducted my animal rights advocacy. Ableism and carnism and patriarchy and racism and sexism and speciesism are linked. I knew that. But they are linked in such a way that even fighting against one can undermine...