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Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good

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Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The recognition of animal pain and stress, once controversial, is now acknowledged by legislation in many countries, but there is no formal recognition of animals' ability to feel pleasure. Pleasurable Kingdom is the first book for lay-readers to present new evidence that animals — like humans — enjoy themselves. It debunks the popular perception that life for most is a continuous, grim struggle for survival and the avoidance of pain. Instead it suggests that creatures from birds to baboons feel good thanks to play, sex, touch, food, anticipation, comfort, aesthetics, and more. Combining rigorous evidence, elegant argument and amusing anecdotes, leading animal behavior researcher Jonathan Balcombe proposes that the possibility of positive feelings in creatures other than humans has important ethical ramifications for both science and society.

Review:

"When birds take a dip in the water, is it to clean their feathers, or is it just plain fun? The author addresses such questions in a brisk, erudite and enormously entertaining contribution to the growing genre of books about the emotions of animals. Balcombe, an animal behavior research consultant for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, presents an excellent, approachable introduction to the basic issues in animal behavior, with the potential to gain a much wider reception than such classics as Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson and Susan McCarthy's When Elephants Weep. By presenting evidence 'from both scientific study and anecdote, that the animal kingdom is rich in pleasure,' Balcombe balances a general philosophical look at the prevalence of pleasure among animals (he rejects the view that all behavior must be explained in terms of adaptation for survival) with detailed anecdotal evidence of how specific animals experience pleasure in play, food, sex, touching and love. But what may most attract readers to Balcombe's powerful argument 'that animals have minds and feelings' is the cover photo: two smiling pigs nuzzling each other in an inescapably endearing pose. (May)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Dr. Balcombe convincingly argues that animals are individual beings with a wide range of emotions and feeling. If he is correct — and I believe he is — it follows that we must grapple with the ethical consequences of his important insights." Wayne Pacelle, President & CEO, The Humane Society of the United States

Review:

"Pleasurable Kingdom is a love affair with our fellow beings. Balcombe tempts us to consider, more open-mindedly than ever before, the experiences of animals in more ways than traditional science has yet acknowledged, perhaps even imagined." Professor Jaak Panksepp, Author, Affective Neuroscience

Review:

"I predicted, in When Elephants Weep, that in ten years better scientists would write better books about the depth of feelings in animals. Well, that time has come, and here is that book." Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, Author, When Elephants Weep

Review:

"This impressive book takes the reader on a journey of scientific knowledge and understanding into the inner lives of others, from mice to monkeys and fish to fowl — even insects and worms — that inspires respect and appreciation for all creatures great and small. Dr. Balcombe's book should be a standard text for students of biology and behaviour. All who care for animals will be informed and inspired." Michael W. Fox, Veterinarian, columnist, author

Review:

"For centuries humanity has justified our extermination of fishes with the myth that they do not have feelings or intelligence. Jonathan Balcombe exposes this myth and presents fishes, with other animals, as sensitive, social, feeling, marvelous sentient beings." Captain Paul Watson, founder of Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

Review:

"In Pleasurable Kingdom, Balcombe draws together an extraordinary amount of information to help us to appreciate that we are not the only species that can, if all goes well, live joyful lives." Peter Singer, Professor of Bioethics, Princeton University, USA

Review:

"[E]ntertaining and thought-provoking....Recommended..." Library Journal

Synopsis:

A rousing case for animal pleasure and its ethical and evolutionary implications

Synopsis:

The recognition of animal pain and stress, once controversial, is now acknowledged by legislation in many countries, but there is no formal recognition of animals' ability to feel pleasure. Pleasurable Kingdom is the first book for lay-readers to present new evidence that animals--like humans--enjoy themselves. It debunks the popular perception that life for most is a continuous, grim struggle for survival and the avoidance of pain. Instead it suggests that creatures from birds to baboons feel good thanks to play, sex, touch, food, anticipation, comfort, aesthetics, and more. Combining rigorous evidence, elegant argument and amusing anecdotes, leading animal behavior researcher Jonathan Balcombe proposes that the possibility of positive feelings in creatures other than humans has important ethical ramifications for both science and society.

For more information please visit the author's website at www.pleasurablekingdom.com

Synopsis:

Pleasurable Kingdom presents new evidence that animals--like humans--enjoy themselves. From birds to baboons, insects to iguanas, animals feel good thanks to play, sex, touch, food, anticipation, comfort, aesthetics, and more. Combining rigorous evidence, elegant argument and amusing anecdotes, leading animal behavior researcher Jonathan Balcombe shows that the possibility of positive feelings in creatures other than humans has important ethical ramifications for both science and society.
 
 

About the Author

Dr. Jonathan Balcombe is an animal behavior Research Scientist for the Washington, DC-based Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and author of The Use of Animals in Higher Education: Problems, Alternatives, and Recommendations.

A biologist, Jonathan studied at York University (Toronto) and Carleton University (Ottawa) before obtaining his doctorate in ethology (animal behaviour) from the University of Tennessee (Knoxville). In addition to published papers on the behavioural ecology of bats, birds, and turtles, he has written many scholarly and lay articles on animal use in education and research. A popular speaker, he has given invited presentations in the USA, UK, Canada, Japan, Brazil, Israel, and mainland Europe.

In his spare time, Jonathan enjoys bird- and nature-watching, biking, and watercolor painting.

Table of Contents

I. Why Animal Pleasure
1. Survival of the Happiest: The Adaptive Basis for Pleasure
2. Forbidden Pleasures: Our Reluctance to Acknowledge Animal Pleasure
3. Feeling Smart: The Intelligence of Pleasure
II. What Animal Pleasure
1. Play: Fun for Its Own Sake
2. Food: The Pleasures of Sustenance
3. Sex: Procreation and Recreation
4. Touch: Making Contact with Pleasure
5. Love: The Ripening Warmth of Intimacy
6. Other Pleasures: Esthetics, Humor and Beyond
7. From Flies to Fish: At the Margins of Pleasure
III. From Animal Pleasure
1. Feeling Good, Doing Good: Implications of a Pleasurable Kingdom

Product Details

ISBN:
9781403986016
Author:
Balcombe, Jonathan
Publisher:
MacMillan
Foreword:
Goodall, Jane
Subject:
Zoology
Subject:
Pleasure
Subject:
Emotions in animals
Subject:
Life Sciences - Zoology - General
Subject:
Biology-Zoology
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
MacSci
Publication Date:
20060531
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Cartoons
Pages:
360
Dimensions:
7.75 x 5.00 in

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Science
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » World History » General
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Ethology and Animal Behavior
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Zoology » General
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » Animal Rights
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Animal Rights
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Zoology
Sports and Outdoors » Outdoors » Conservation and Animal Rights

Pleasurable Kingdom: Animals and the Nature of Feeling Good Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$4.95 In Stock
Product details 360 pages MacMillan - English 9781403986016 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "When birds take a dip in the water, is it to clean their feathers, or is it just plain fun? The author addresses such questions in a brisk, erudite and enormously entertaining contribution to the growing genre of books about the emotions of animals. Balcombe, an animal behavior research consultant for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, presents an excellent, approachable introduction to the basic issues in animal behavior, with the potential to gain a much wider reception than such classics as Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson and Susan McCarthy's When Elephants Weep. By presenting evidence 'from both scientific study and anecdote, that the animal kingdom is rich in pleasure,' Balcombe balances a general philosophical look at the prevalence of pleasure among animals (he rejects the view that all behavior must be explained in terms of adaptation for survival) with detailed anecdotal evidence of how specific animals experience pleasure in play, food, sex, touching and love. But what may most attract readers to Balcombe's powerful argument 'that animals have minds and feelings' is the cover photo: two smiling pigs nuzzling each other in an inescapably endearing pose. (May)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Dr. Balcombe convincingly argues that animals are individual beings with a wide range of emotions and feeling. If he is correct — and I believe he is — it follows that we must grapple with the ethical consequences of his important insights."
"Review" by , "Pleasurable Kingdom is a love affair with our fellow beings. Balcombe tempts us to consider, more open-mindedly than ever before, the experiences of animals in more ways than traditional science has yet acknowledged, perhaps even imagined."
"Review" by , "I predicted, in When Elephants Weep, that in ten years better scientists would write better books about the depth of feelings in animals. Well, that time has come, and here is that book."
"Review" by , "This impressive book takes the reader on a journey of scientific knowledge and understanding into the inner lives of others, from mice to monkeys and fish to fowl — even insects and worms — that inspires respect and appreciation for all creatures great and small. Dr. Balcombe's book should be a standard text for students of biology and behaviour. All who care for animals will be informed and inspired."
"Review" by , "For centuries humanity has justified our extermination of fishes with the myth that they do not have feelings or intelligence. Jonathan Balcombe exposes this myth and presents fishes, with other animals, as sensitive, social, feeling, marvelous sentient beings."
"Review" by , "In Pleasurable Kingdom, Balcombe draws together an extraordinary amount of information to help us to appreciate that we are not the only species that can, if all goes well, live joyful lives."
"Review" by , "[E]ntertaining and thought-provoking....Recommended..."
"Synopsis" by ,
A rousing case for animal pleasure and its ethical and evolutionary implications

"Synopsis" by ,
The recognition of animal pain and stress, once controversial, is now acknowledged by legislation in many countries, but there is no formal recognition of animals' ability to feel pleasure. Pleasurable Kingdom is the first book for lay-readers to present new evidence that animals--like humans--enjoy themselves. It debunks the popular perception that life for most is a continuous, grim struggle for survival and the avoidance of pain. Instead it suggests that creatures from birds to baboons feel good thanks to play, sex, touch, food, anticipation, comfort, aesthetics, and more. Combining rigorous evidence, elegant argument and amusing anecdotes, leading animal behavior researcher Jonathan Balcombe proposes that the possibility of positive feelings in creatures other than humans has important ethical ramifications for both science and society.

For more information please visit the author's website at www.pleasurablekingdom.com

"Synopsis" by ,
Pleasurable Kingdom presents new evidence that animals--like humans--enjoy themselves. From birds to baboons, insects to iguanas, animals feel good thanks to play, sex, touch, food, anticipation, comfort, aesthetics, and more. Combining rigorous evidence, elegant argument and amusing anecdotes, leading animal behavior researcher Jonathan Balcombe shows that the possibility of positive feelings in creatures other than humans has important ethical ramifications for both science and society.
 
 
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