Honors Senior Theses/Projects


Sean Martinez

Date of Award

Spring 2021

Exit Requirement

Undergraduate Honors Thesis/Project


Honors Program

Faculty Advisor

Dr. Lars Söderlund

Honors Program Director

Dr. Gavin Keulks


The relationship between animals and humans has always been complicated. Today, society uses zoos as a method of protecting endangered species while also educating people about them. While zoos do a lot of good for preserving animals, there have been instances in the past of some zoos unintentionally, or intentionally, harming them. Therefore, I wrote Slaughterhouse Zoo, a novel that will explore themes in animal rights, acceptance of change, and morality. The novel features protagonist Dylan Alderbridge, a passionate animal lover who is also cynical towards people, as he becomes suspicious of the Nirmala Zoo’s intentions. He aims to get to the bottom of his speculations and take down the corrupt zoo from within by becoming an intern. He later discovers that the zoo has been mistreating and abusing its animals. Through this fictional story, I hope to shine a light on misunderstood animals, as well as show how zoos can be crucial to helping people understand animals better.