Straw Dogs

Author: John Gray

Type: Non-fiction, essays

Full title: Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals

Published: 2002

I read it: March 2008

straw dogs

A book with a thousand ideas. The main downfall of Gray’s work is that it’s too short (the subtitle of “Thoughts” is pretty literal). The author comments on the current state of humanity by dissecting most of the major schools of thought that have dominated Western culture. At its best, the book attempts to knock away the absurd idea that humans can somehow surpass their animal nature. Anyone who wants some tasty food for thought should pick up this quick read and take notes. Who knows, by 2150 Gaia may have trumped us all and our grandchildren’s grandchildren will consider books a luxury in a world barren of resources.

An aside: I was reading Straw Dogs while watching the extra disc from the Planet Earth DVDs. Gray used quotes from a few of the scientists interviewed for that show. For anyone interested in the future of the natural world, I would suggest both of these works as good starting points.

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