Subtitle: Pets and Their People in the Western World
Size: 5.75″ x 8.5″
“Petishism,” our mounting obsession with pet animals, has become, in all its many forms, an alarming social phenomenon. This book takes the lid off that phenomenon.
Pets as status symbols, pets as surrogate children, husband, you name it. Pets as a cause (and the expensively equipped humane societies that proliferate while people starve), pets over people, pets on their way to church, pets as heirs, pets at the opera, pets in analysis, pets at pet tea-parties. Pet cosmetics, birth control pills, horoscopes, pension and insurance plans, cook books, travel and hotel accommodations, greeting cards, jewelry, special clothes to match your own and funerals. The industry follows the trend and now grosses several billion dollars a year. A green and gold stucco home, complete with gold drinking fountain and red velvet cushions, for a pet dog.
This is a stunning, horrific book. Mrs. Szasz goes behind the specifics to find that no longer capable of loving one another, we have anthropomorphized our pet animals to such an incredible degree that many of us prefer pet relationship to those with human beings. She is all in favor of pets as long as they are loved for the animals they are, but she believes that the extravagance of our affection for undemanding pet animals is symptomatic of our anxiety, that we must be returned to the primary concern for other human beings if we are to survive. Her book must be read.
Born in Budapest, Kathleen Szasz has been known primarily for her translations from Hungarian, German, French, and Spanish. Her research for Petishism took her all over the United States and Europe, but she has lived in London or the past twelve years.
A DOG IS A CAT IS A PARROT IS A FISH
1 The History of Pet Keeping 3
2 Pets – and the Potential Adults 18
3 Pets and the “Expendables” 44
4 Pets as a “Cause” 70
THE FURRED, FEATHERED, AND SCALY PEOPLE
5 Pets and the Yahoos 97
6 Pets and the Taboos 116
7 The Jet-Pet Set 145
8 Pets as Status Symbols 168
THE PROFIT MARKERS AND NEED CREATORS
9 Pet Power 191
10 Pet Power by Proxy 221
Selected Bibliography 244
Subtitle: (if different)
Size: 5.75″ x 8.5″
ISBN: (SBN) 03-066230-3
An extreme example was that of Adolf Hitler, who had millions of human beings murdered and countless of his own followers assassinated if he suspected them of treason, but was so attached to his dog, Blondie, that he would, even during the last weeks of the war, come out from his ‘bunker’ at the risk of his life to let Blondie run around in the fresh air for at least fifteen minutes each day. However, one does not have to be a mass-murderer to cause the destruction of one’s fellows. An infinite number of ordinary people who expend all their positive emotions on animals contribute, by their hatred, contempt, or mere indifference, to the oppression and physical or psychological annihilation of human beings.”