Creepy Welding Mask–Wearing Monkey Experimenter to Greet Harvard Students

For Immediate Release:
September 1, 2023

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382


Students arriving on the Harvard University campus for the first day of classes will be greeted by a PETA supporter wearing a welding mask and a bloody lab coat, sitting eerily in a rocking chair, as a black-draped crib nearby emits the sound of a monkey screaming.

When:    Tuesday, September 5, 12 noon

Where:    Johnston Gate, Harvard Yard entrance at Peabody Street, Cambridge

The chilling display will mimic the experiments of Margaret Livingstone, who rips newborn monkeys away from their mothers, cages them alone, and makes her staff wear welding masks so that the infants never see a face. She’s even sewn some baby monkeys’ eyelids shut as part of sensory deprivation studies.

“Livingstone’s pointless experiments are abuse, not science,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is urging Harvard to shut down this house of horrors and retire the survivors to a reputable sanctuary now.”

            Photo: Harvard University Program in Neuroscience’s Ph.D. Program

In cruel experiments that have no relevance to human health, baby monkeys in Livingstone’s laboratory are torn away from their mothers and raised in emotionally impoverished conditions, without the possibility of seeing any faces—human or monkey—for a full year.

Earlier this year, more than 380 experts—including primatologist Dr. Jane Goodall, conservationist Dr. Ian Redmond, and Harvard anthropologist Dr. Richard Wrangham—joined Harvard’s Animal Law & Policy Clinic in urging the National Institutes of Health to end funding for Livingstone’s “cruel monkey experiments at Harvard Medical School.” That action followed a letter last September from 261 scientists around the world to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences asking it to retract Livingstone’s publication, emphasizing that her work is unethical and noting that it fails to advance scientific knowledge.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview.

For more information, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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