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Watch – In conversation with Esther Woolfson

24 March 2022

Caroline Sanderson interviews Esther Woolfson about her new book Between Light and Storm: Our Lives With Other Species.

Esther Woolfson

This was an exclusive live event for Saga customers, recorded in October 2021. Experience it again below.


Between Light and Storm

Beginning with the very origins of life on Earth, Woolfson considers pre-historic human-animal interaction and traces the millennia-long evolution of conceptions of the soul and conscience in relation to the animal kingdom, and the consequences of our belief in human superiority. She explores our representation of animals in art, our consumption of them for food, our experiments on them for science, and our willingness to slaughter them for sport and fashion, as well as examining concepts of love and ownership.

Drawing on philosophy and theology, art and history, as well as her own experience of living with animals and coming to know, love and respect them as individuals, Woolfson examines some of the most complex ethical issues surrounding our treatment of animals and argues passionately and persuasively for a more humble, more humane, relationship with the creatures who share our world.

‘A powerful, poignant, and urgently important reflection on our relations with the non-human world. Immaculately researched and compulsively readable.’
Charles Foster, author of Being a Beast

About Esther Woolfson

Esther Woolfson grew up in Glasgow and studied Chinese at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Edinburgh University. Her acclaimed short stories have appeared in many anthologies and have been read on Radio 4. She is the author of Corvus: A Life with Birds and has won prizes for both her stories and her nature writing. She has been the recipient of a Scottish Arts Council Travel Grant and a Writer’s Bursary. Field Notes from a Hidden City was shortlisted for the 2014 Thwaites Wainwright Prize for Nature and Travel Writing.

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