Today, January 4, 119 years ago, a female, wild-caught Asian elephant called Topsy is killed in front of 1,000 plus people at Lunar Park, one of America’s first amusement parks,… Read More


Topsy was in her late twenties when she was murdered at Luna Park on Coney Island in New York on January 4, 1903. The murder scene is one of America’s first theme parks at a time when the United States emerges as an industrial world leader. My use of the word “murder” rather than “killed” is deliberate. Her life and death represent the fate of many animals—not just elephants and not just in the entertainment industry. Even though some thought her guilty, I felt she was innocent.… Read More


On January 4, 1903, an Asian elephant called Topsy was electrocuted to death on Coney Island, New York. One hundred and fifteen years later, I remember Topsy in my chapter in Animal Biography: Re-framing Animal Lives edited Andre Krebber and Mieke Roscher and published by Palgrave in their series Studies in Animals and Literature.… Read More


Sadly, I am unable to attend but I urge those who can to attend the Association of Lawyers for Animal Welfare seminar, ‘Zoo licensing – is the regulatory regime working?,’ on Wednesday,… Read More


Bee Friedlander, my colleague at the Animals and Society Institute, chronicles the growing awareness of animal welfare at her local zoo in Detroit. She writes, Today the Detroit Zoo has… Read More


Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent South, Robert Flello, is promoting a Private Members Bill, Use of Wild Animals in Circuses, in the House of Commons in the British Parliament. The chances of this bill becoming… Read More