185 pages, b/w illustrations
Suggest to the average leftist that animals should be part of broader liberation struggles and – once they stop laughing – you'll find yourself casually dismissed. With a focus on labor, property, and the life of commodities, Making a Killing contains key insights into the broad nature of domination, power, and hierarchy. It explores the intersections between human and animal oppressions in relation to the exploitative dynamics of capitalism. Combining nuts-and-bolts Marxist political economy, a pluralistic anarchist critique, as well as a searing assessment of the animal rights movement, Bob Torres challenges conventional anti-capitalist thinking and convincingly advocates for the abolition of animals in industry – and on the dinner plate. Making a Killing is sure to spark wide debate in the animal rights and anarchist movements for years to come.
"Bob Torres' Making a Killing draws a very straight line between capitalism and the oppressive system of animal agribusiness. Drawing from social anarchist theory, Torres provides a convincing argument that in order to fight animal exploitation, we must also fight capitalism and, in doing so, animal rights activists will need to reconsider their methods and redirect their focus. While his critiques of the animal rights movements' large organizations may not earn him friends in high places, such considerations are crucial to keeping the movement on track and for preventing stagnation. Making a Killing is an important work from a new voice in animal advocacy that will surely spark heated discussions amongst activists from all corners of the movement."
– Ryan MacMichael, vegblog.org
"In Making A Killing: The Political Economy of Animal Rights, Bob Torres takes an important and timely look at the animal rights movement, calling for a synthetic approach to all oppression, human and animal. His analytical framework draws together Marxism, social anarchist theory, and an abolitionist approach to animal rights to provide a timely social analysis that will no doubt have profound effects on the animal rights movement literature."
– Gary L. Francione, Distinguished Professor of Law, Rutgers University
"Bob Torres's socioeconomic analysis of nonhuman animal use is a welcome and important addition to the understanding of human-nonhuman relations at the beginning of the 21st century. In particular, Making a Killing, makes vital a contribution to understanding the role of the property status of animals and the continuing strength of various welfarist positions on the ethics – and indeed the economics – of the human utilisation of other animals. Making a Killing will become required reading for social scientists and others interested in modern social movements and the socioeconomic forces that shape their activities and their claims-making."
– Dr. Roger Yates, Lecturer in sociology at University College, Dublin, Republic of Ireland
"This is the book I've been waiting for. Making A Killing is a rare and powerful example of first-rate scholarship, a searing critique, and lively declaration of the rights of animals and humans. You will walk away from this book with a clear understanding as to why social justice movements for people must take animal rights seriously, and vice versa. Bob Torres has forever deepened my thinking about these relationships."
– David Naguib Pellow, vegetarian, animal rights and anti-racist activist, and Professor of Ethnic Studies, University of California, San Diego; and author of Garbage Wars: The Struggle for Environmental Justice in Chicago and Resisting Global Toxics: Transnational Movements for Environmental Justice
I Taking Equality Seriously
II Chained Commodities
III Property, Violence, and the Roots of Oppression
IV Animal Rights and Wrongs
V You Cannot Buy the Revolution
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Bob Torres is assistant professor of sociology at St. Lawrence University, received his PhD from Cornell, and is co-author of Vegan Freak: Being Vegan in a Non-Vegan World. His writings have appeared in Critical Sociology, The Journal of Latinos and Education, International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, and Satya magazine.