Immortal Animal Souls

Author: Preece, Rod
Year:2005
Pages:296
ISBN:0-7734-6069-1
978-0-7734-6069-0
Price:199.95
Whether animals possessed immortal souls was a controversial topic in the nineteenth century. Answers to the question constituted an important manner of addressing the status of animals. While relatively little was written on the theme, the issue was a common topic of conversation, as it had also been in the prior centuries. The contributions to the subject presented in this volume were among the most significant of the Victorian era, coming from members of the newly established veterinary profession and from an author with a general interest in theological questions. These essays demonstrate Victorian patterns of thought on the human-animal relationship and help modern scholars understand the complexities of the contemporary approach to the status of animals. In addition to the essays, the editor provides a substantial introduction and detailed annotation which allow the modern scholar to both place Victorian ideas on this topic in the context of the thought of prior and later centuries, and also to understand the context of Victorian society in which these matters were addressed.

Reviews

“This particular work deals with animal immortality, a doubly charged topic ... This particular volume consists of a reprint of a debate on animal immortality originally printed in The Veterinarian followed by a reprint of a book written some forty years after that debate, Joseph Hamilton's Animal Futurity ... and is interesting from a historical perspective in that it allows us a first hand glimpse into the Victorian thought processes that, as Preece points out, laid the foundation for later development of values about animals. Where the context and the expressions used by the authors are foreign to the modern reader, Precce's editorial notes and annotations provide excellent clarifications and interpretations. One can only marvel at Dr. Preece's great erudition. The editorial notes are a fertile source of philosophical, literary and historical references and insights, and one is richer for them. And, as mentioned above, because this wonderful volume, through the contesting, passionate voices of its authors, touches on the central issue of the immortality debate, it also serves as a resource for anyone exploring the topic.” – (from the Foreword) Dr. Johanna Tito, Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario

“Thank you for sharing this fascinating discussion about whether animals have immortal souls, which shed light on 19th century thought as well as the ongoing debate about animal immortality. Your comments are very interesting and insightful ...” – Stephen R. Kaufman, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine

“ ... In this work, the editor brings to us a piece of the past or, perhaps with a little imagination, he takes us back to the 1800s ... Numerous questions regarding whether animals have souls, such as their level and degree of intelligence, their mention in holy scriptures, and their relationship to humans with regard to the fall from Eden are addressed in this book. It is a must have for anyone interested in history or animal welfare and/or rights.” – Michael Shaw, Pastor, London, Ontario

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Foreword by Johanna Tito
Editor's Introduction
The Veterinarian, Vols. XII and XIII (1839-1840)
Animal Futurity, Preface, Ch. II,II,II,IV,V,VI,VII,VIII,IX,X,XI