BOOKS: Animal experimentation: Cruelty or Science?

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 1994:
Animal experimentation: Cruelty
or Science? by Nancy Day. E n s l o w
Publishers Inc. (Bloy St. & Ramsey Ave.,
Box 777, Hillside, NJ 07205-0777),
1994. 128 pages, $17.95 hardcover.
This is one of the titles of Enslow’s
“Issues in Focus” series, books tailored to
readers aged 12 and up, exploring current
controversies. Animal Experimentation
examines the pros and cons of vivisection in
as fair and unbiased a treatment as possible,
quoting experts and spokespersons from both

Included is a very brief history of
the use of animals in scientific experimenta-
tion, as well as of the animal rights move-
ment, which grew in reaction to and revul-
sion against the casually cruel practice of
vivisection. On the scientists’ side is the argu-
ment that without animal experimentation,
our civilisation would not enjoy its present
level of health and safety. The position of the
antivivisectionists ranges from encouraging
alternate methods of medical testing, all the
way to questioning whether human welfare is
worth a n y pain or hardship inflicted on ani-
The book concludes by urging read-
ers to continue to explore the issues present-
ed, with a view toward drawing conclusions
based on knowledge rather than prejudice or
sentimentality. Still, enough emotionally
charged quotes are included to help sway
fence-sitters. “The truth is,” reads literature
from the Animal Rights Connection, “that
animal experimentation is a highly profitable
enterprise. There is no money in preventative
medicine.” A scientist counterpoints with the
opinion that “anyone who’s had a child”
would have no problem deciding whose
health and happiness is more important, the
child’s or the experimental animal’s.
Animal Experimentation s h o w s
youthful readers that answers do not come
down from on high, helpfully colored black
or white, but rather are formed as much from
one’s own experience and often hard-won
philosophical development.
––P.J. Kemp
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