How Friends Become Food

In an eye-opening new research paper called The Conceptual Separation of Food and Animals in Childhood, University of Bristol researchers Kate Stewart and Matthew Cole explore how we, as a society, teach our children a separate morality for food animals that intercepts a child’s natural tendency to protect and empathize with all animals. As the paper points out, when we explain to children for the first time where meat comes from, their first reaction is often revulsion. Parents confront this moral quandary by explaining to children why farm animals have a different role in our lives than other animals.

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