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The Philosopher's Dog

Raimond Gaita



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Text Publishing Company
01 February 2005
ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- It is rare to find a book that approaches the subject of animals with both intelligence and tenderness in equal measure. Here is such a book and what a beautiful book it is! Sian McNabney

How do animals think and feel? Is it mistaken to attribute to them the concepts of love, devotion, grief; even dignity? How can we understand our conception of such things, and what do our relations with animals say about our own humanity?

In this much-loved book, Raimond Gaita investigates such questions through stories of animals he has known and loved, and through the reflections of others. The Philospher’s Dog is moving, sometimes funny and always thought provoking.

Shortlisted, NSW Premier’s Literary Awards
Shortlisted, Age Book of the Year
By:   Raimond Gaita
Imprint:   Text Publishing Company
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 200mm,  Width: 130mm,  Spine: 15mm
Weight:   153g
ISBN:   9781877008993
ISBN 10:   1877008990
Pages:   224
Publication Date:   01 February 2005
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Reviews for The Philosopher's Dog

'In everything that Raimond Gaita writes we sense a generous heart at work, as well as a lucid intelligence. The Philosopher's Dog is a book to give to the kind of person who asks what philosophy is for.' -- J. M. Coetzee 'A fine, intelligent investigation of our relationship to animals and nature in which the analysis of ideas is seamlessly integrated with the poignant evocation of personal experience. Gaita's writing is deep without being difficult; sincere without being naive-rare and valuable achievements for a philosopher.' Age 'An original book by a profoundly original thinker.' Bulletin 'Patient and eminently sensible exploration of our relationship with animals.' Sydney Morning Herald 'The Philosopher's Dog, then, is a mongrel and, like most mongrels, is clever and energetic. Not straight philosophy, or straight forward storytelling (as Gaita did so well in his memoir Romulus, My Father), its an interesting amalgam.' Australian 'The Philosopher's Dog (Text) is thoughtful, touching and utterly admirable.' Big Issue 'Gaita shares with Wittgenstein the urge to de-mystify false (and often harmful) mystifications. That he does so with such beauty and profundity should surprise no-one who read Romulus, My Father. Gaita is fascinated-in the deepest sense of the word-by what it means to be alive, and the reader is drawn in to this fascination...As a work of philosophy this is groundbreaking and profound, as a work of personal memoir it is moving and thought provoking.' -- Readings '[An] enjoyable and rather beautiful book...The stories are often deeply touching, without being sentimental, and their atmospheres left me haunted for days afterwards...Gaita's charming book remains genuinely illuminating.' Guardian 'Despite the sensitivity of his narrative writing, when he's describing the pain of a sick animal, or the devotion of a dog to a lonely child, Gaita is foremost an unapologetic thinker...I was surprised how much I took from this book, not just from the lyricism of the literary content...There's a great deal in The Philosopher's Dog that is provocative and liberating.' Daily Telegraph 'Fascinating...A thoughtful meditation on the relationship between humans and animals that crosses the boundary between the philosophical and the personal and blends very well the anecdotal with the theoretical.' Sunday Tribune

  • Short-listed for Age Book of the Year 2003 (Australia)
  • Short-listed for NSW Premier's Literary Awards 2003 (Australia)

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