Synopses & Reviews
Are we ready for parrots and dolphins to be treated as persons before the law? In this unprecedented exploration of animal cognition along the evolutionary spectrum-from infants and children to other intelligent primates, from dolphins, parrots, elephants, and dogs to colonies of honeybees-Steve Wise finds answers to the big question in animal rights today: Where do we draw the line? Readers will be enthralled as they follow Wise's firsthand account of the world's most famous animal experts at work: Cynthia Moss and the touchingly affectionate families of Amboseli; Irene Pepperberg and her amazing and witty African Grey parrot, Alex; and Penny Paterson with the formidable gorilla Koko. In many cases, Wise was able to sustain an extended conversation with these extraordinary creatures. No one with even a shred of curiosity about animal intelligence or justice will want to miss this book.
One of those rare books that can change the reader's view of our position in the world and within the animal kingdom, Unlocking the Cage is a landmark both in its scientific insight and in its challenge to the law. As Steven Wise continues his exploration of animal cognition along the evolutionary spectrum -- from apes to dolphins, parrots, elephants, dogs, and even honeybees -- he finds astonishing answers to the big question in animal rights today: Where do we draw the line? The law has firm criteria for personhood and Wise shows how certain non-human animals meet those criteria. Readers will be enthralled as they follow Wise's firsthand investigations of the work of the world's most famous animal experts: in Kenya with Cynthia Moss and the touchingly affectionate elephant families of Amboseli, in the mountains of Uganda with Richard Wrangham and the chimpanzees of the Kibale Forest, at MIT with Irene Pepperberg and her amazing and witty gray parrot, Alex, and in the California sanctuary where Penny Paterson has spent two decades learning about the skills and vivid personality of Koko the gorilla. In many cases, Wise was even able to sustain an extended conversation with these extraordinary creatures. Steven Wise is the world's foremost expert on the legal rights of animals and has devoted his life to litigating, writing, and working on their behalf. No one with a shred of curiosity about animals, about rights, or about justice will want to miss this book. A Merloyd Lawrence Book
The first scientific exploration of those animals, from honeybees to gorillas, whose abilities should entitle them to legal rights as persons
About the Author
Steven M. Wise, J.D., has practiced animal law for over twenty years and has taught at the Harvard, Vermont, and John Marshall law schools. He is President of the Center for the Expansion of Fundamental Rights, which he founded in 1995. The author of Rattling the Cage, praised by Cass Sunstein as "an impassioned, fascinating, and in many ways startling book" (New York Times Book Review), and Drawing the Line, which Nature called "provocative and disturbing," he has been profiled nationally by such publications as the New York Times, the Washington Post, and Time magazine.