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Pit Bull: The Battle over an American Icon

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Get to the bottom of the most infamous breed around with Pit Bull: The Battle over an American Icon. When author Bronwen Dickey brought her new dog home, she saw no trace of the infamous viciousness in her loving and affectionate pit bull. And so she was led to wonder—what caused this breed, beloved by Helen Keller and Teddy Roosevelt, to become known as a brutal fighter?

Her search for answers took her everywhere from 19th century New York dogfighting pits to early 20th century movie sets, and from the battlefield of Gettysburg to struggling urban neighborhoods. In this New York Times best seller, Dickey shares the illuminating story of how a popular breed became demonized—and what role humans have played in the transformation. Offering an insightful view of American’s relationship with their dogs, Dickey does a beautiful job of getting to the heart of this often controversial dog.

About the Author

Bronwen Dickey is an essayist and journalist who writes regularly for the Oxford American. Her work has also appeared in The New York Times, Slate, The Best American Travel Writing 2009, Newsweek, and Outside, among other publications. In 2009 she received a first-place Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Award and a MacDowell Colony residency grant.

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  • Item Number
  • Dimensions
    9.5 x 6.8 x 1 inches
  • Weight
    1.55 pounds
  • ISBN-10
  • ISBN-13
  • Pages
  • Format
  • Subject
    Dog Breeds
  • Dog Breed
    Pit Bull (American Pit Bull Terrier)
  • Author
    Bronwen Dickey
  • Publication Date
    May 10, 2016
  • Publisher
    Penguin Random House
Rating: 3.6 of 5 stars 3 Reviews 3 Reviews 3.7 out of 5 Stars

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67% Recommend

67% of reviewersrecommend this product

Rating: 3.6 of 5 stars 3.7 / 5

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  • 5 out of 5 stars

    Excellent Book Researched and Debunks Myths

    By NurseLovesalldogs on Dec 30, 2020

    This book was so good!! Totally researched. debunks myths and provides truthful history not fear hysteria. Sadly, the anti-pitbull haters that have never done any research ever our giving this book a bad review, fake review without ever reading it. They have stalked and threatened the author of this book. I highly recommend this book for all dog lovers, Anti-BSL Advocates and animal advocates who don't discriminate based on how a dog looks !

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  • 1 out of 5 stars


    By Gemma on Aug 31, 2020

    The dog on the front cover doesn’t even appear to be a real american pitbull terrier which is the only pitbull. PITBULL IS NOT AN UMBRELLA TERM, STOP TREATING IT LIKE ONE! this is a REAL pitbull

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  • 5 out of 5 stars

    Fantastic and informative!

    By SaraPea603 on Jan 12, 2019

    I really enjoyed reading this book and I have learned so much! It really helped create an easy to understand picture for the reader. Even knowing what I do, I've often struggled to separate the blurred lines of fact and fiction surrounding this topic. Whether it be well intentioned advocates for the breed, or overly cautious "anti-pitty" people, it can be difficult sometimes to discern truth in the well muddied waters. I think this book is just what our culture needs to sort out all the truth from the nonsense fueling pit bull stigma.

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