I'm concious of the fact that I don't give each book that I read a review here on my blog. Maybe I should try to change that, but I get the feeling that unless the book is hugely popular or has a special meaning, it would be dull to post review after review.
I read Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer in March. Here's my Goodreads review:
Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I must say that the only reason that I can't find this book perfect for what it tried to do was because Jonathan Safran Foer has an annoying tendency to contradict himself, faults in comprehensiveness, and a slight tediousness in the second half of the book. Otherwise, the best you can get in its category.
Yet halfway through Eating Animals I fell in a sort of precipitated love for it, and listed my reasons for why it deserved the full five stars! (And I do indeed mantain my positions for all the ones that are here).
a. It is magnificently quoted and biographed. 60 pages of bibliography are more than worthy of applaud.
b.I love the multi-perspective approach. It is a fabulous way to tell the whole story and therefore gains points in the objective zone (which is more than aprecciated, especially for a non-fiction). The varied points of view on the factory farm problem speak a lot about Foer's journalistic ability.
c. It is, for the most part, incredibly entertaining and true. The many personal stories, especially in the first half of the book, make you feel more deeply. Thanks to this, at least in my case, the facts affected me more personally.
d. I greatly admire the philosophical aspect of this book. A book that makes you question much more than you thought it would is a great one. The relationship of the reader with food, with its environment, its beliefs, its family... Amazing.
e. This might be a stupid side-note, but I will always fall a little extra bit for books that use BCE (Before Common Era) instead of the slightly antiquated AD (After Death.)
f. The graphic design. Oh my, simply amazing.
In short, I would definetely recommend this book to everybody and anybody that feels emotionally and mentally capable of learning the truth about what it is that they are eating. Because, trust me, I lived it... you will not find yourself in the same relationship with your food again.
I do, however, feel like I have a healthier relationship with all food. Because I have a conscience, and that is what matters. I have an opinion about what I am eating.
View all my reviews
I gave it 4/5 stars.
One can't read this book without the final prospect of coming to a decision. Will one continue to eat animals? And I don't think anybody who finishes this will think so lightly about the possibility of becoming a vegetarian, or a vegan.
What is my decision? I am still a teenager, living in my parent's home. My parents do not value vegetarianism and refuse to read this book. They don't support, and don't understand my feelings on the topic.
This is okay.
Before reading EA, since May of 2010, I had stopped eating red meats altogether. (Small changes like these my parents did indeed support.) I did, however, continue to eat poultry and fish.
However, thanks to JSF I am now more informed on this topic and know that the right decision would be to stop eating poultry and fish and continue eating red meats. So I will stop eating poultry.
So I am what you could call a "selective onmivore." Not exactly a vegetarian, but with a controlled eating margin.
And, of course, if I have the decision to choose between eating meat and not eating it, I will choose not to. Please don't believe that at family dinnertime, when the menu is steak and rice I eat the steak without my conciensce pressing me. I do. Which is why when I have the option to choose, I will choose to get my vitamins, minerals and calories from primary consumers. Also, I like to think that when I become independant, I will become a vegetarian in the strict sense of the word.
Anyways, to me, the main idea of Eating Animals can be summarized in the following quote:
"We know, at least, that this decision [becoming a vegetarian] will help prevent desforestation, curb global warming, reduce pollution, save oil reserves, lessen the burden on rural America, decrease human rights abuses, improve public health, and help eliminate the most systematic animal abuse in world history."
(asdlfkjalñsdfjasdklfj, I forgot to write down the page number of this quote! Sorryyyy.)