I just learned that my book The Smile of a Dolphin: Remarkable Accounts of Animal Emotions is now banned in certain libraries or class reading lists of certain schools in Texas. It's number 6 on the current list with such books as Paintings from the Cave, Talking in the Dark, and World War Z

I think this is a very interesting and rather unanticipated move and a few people have asked me why I think this was done. The ban does indeed reflect on our relationships with other animals and the best answer I can come up with is that it is due to the presence of evolutionary arguments about animal emotions, there are some essays on sexual behavior and aggression, and there is a picture of a whale's penis. The major reason books are banned is that they contain sex, profanity, violence, religion, race, or politics. My book is guilty of two of these charges -- sex and violence.

I think there's much food for thought here for anthrozoologists and readers of Psychology Today who are interested in human-animal relationships. However, there's also a lot of food for thought here about the freedom for someone to read whatever she or he wants to read. 

Note: As of now not a single person who has written to me is even slightly surprised and some think I should be honored. 

Recent Posts in Animal Emotions

Why SeaWorld Can’t Float: Censorship and Business Ethics

Watch a critical presentation that SeaWorld asked not to be recorded

Entangled Empathy: How to Improve Human-Animal Relationships

A recent book sets out a new ethic for our relationships with other animals.

Wicked Tuna: NGS Supports Animal Abuse and Poor Conservation

This series continues on showing incredible torment and torture of sentient tuna

New Conservation Science is Misguided and Too Much About Us

The view that conservation should focus on human self-interests is wrong-minded

Animals in Emergencies: Lessons from the Christchurch Quakes

Annie Potts and Donelle Gadenne's book is a must read for future animal rescues.

Killing Canadian Wolves Violated Accepted Welfare Guidelines

Scientists show why killing Canadian wolves should never have been allowed.