Colorado State University Distinguished Professor Bernard Rollin has spent the last 45 years working relentlessly to raise awareness about how animals are treated on farms, in laboratories, in rodeo arenas, on hunting grounds and in slaughterhouses.
He helped to establish legislation to control pain for animals in research and played an instrumental role in eliminating the use of sow stalls or gestation crates, which he has called “one of the most egregiously inhumane housing systems” in agriculture.
Rollin explores these triumphs in A New Basis for Animal Ethics: Telos and Common Sense, a book published in September by University of Missouri Press.
The ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle placed an emphasis on telos, defined as an “end” or “purpose,” to explain the world we live in. Rollin presents the philosophical background behind telos and why it matters, and demonstrates with stories, anecdotes and data why common sense is an important basis for understanding animals, their needs and their wants.
Alan Goldberg, founding director emeritus of the Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, described the new work as “possibly the most important book on animal welfare written to date.”
“Bernie Rollin is a philosopher whose head is most definitely not in the clouds,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Human Society of the United States. “He’s given us a lucid, compelling blueprint for how to reimagine our relationship with animals, driven by a social ethic that is common to us all and filled with common sense.”
Rollin is a professor of Philosophy, Animal Sciences and Biomedical Sciences at CSU. He is the 2016 recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Research Ethics from Public Responsibility in Medicine & Research, a nonprofit organization founded in 1974.
He is the author or co-author of 20 books, including Animal Rights & Human Morality; The Experimental Animal in Biomedical Research: A Survey of Scientific and Ethical Issues for Investigators; Farm Animal Welfare: Social, Bioethical and Research Issues; An Introduction to Veterinary Medical Ethics: Theory and Cases; and Putting the Horse before Descartes: My Life’s Work on Behalf of Animals.
Rollin will sign copies of the book on the lower level of the CSU Bookstore Wednesday, Nov. 9, at 3:30 p.m.