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Us & Them
On the importance of animals
For the first time in history, humans sit unchallenged at the top of the food chain. As we encroach on the wild and a vast wave of extinctions gathers force, how has our relationship with animals changed?
In this dazzling essay, Anna Krien investigates the world we have made and the complexity of the choices we face. From pets to the live cattle trade, from apex predators to scientific experiments, Krien shows how we should – and do – treat our fellow creatures. As she delves deeper, she finds that animals can trigger primal emotions in us, which we are often unwilling to acknowledge. This is a clear-eyed meditation on humanity and animality, us and them, that brings out the importance of animals in an unforgettable way.
Correspondence discussing Quarterly Essay 45, Us and Them:
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As a reflection on personal and societal ethics, an exploration of the confused, guilty territory in which most of us live, and as a portrait of an essayist’s process I found it riveting.
An important contribution to one of the biggest moral challenges of our era.
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