Animals, Society and Culture - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

1 / 18
About This Presentation
Title:

Animals, Society and Culture

Description:

Title: Animals, Society and Culture Author: IT Services Last modified by: IT Services Created Date: 10/2/2012 10:13:27 AM Document presentation format – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:71
Avg rating:3.0/5.0
Slides: 19
Provided by: ITSer221
Category:

less

Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: Animals, Society and Culture


1
Animals, Society and Culture
  • Lecture 2
  • What is an animal?
  • 2013-14

2
Significant encounters
  • Dogs, cats, guinea pigs, rats
  • Horses
  • Swans, crows, keel tailed fish, ostriches,
    giraffes, rhinos
  • Domestic animals
  • Wild animals

3
Plant or animal or both?
  • Euglena

4
Lecture outline
  • How animals are defined in relation to human
  • The dualistic mode of thinking about humans and
    animals which characterises western thought
  • How animals and humans are understood in other
    cultures in a non-dualistic way.

5
Defining animals in western culture
  • Human-animal distinction
  • Humanity personhood, agency, intentions, social
    values, moral conscience
  • Animality swayed by primordial passions

6
Historical instability Mediaeval and Early
Modern Europe
  • Human-animal boundary permeable
  • Border creatures
  • Hierarchy of creation
  • Blurring of boundaries punished
  • Animals were put on trial

7
Changing ideas about animals
  • Richard Tapper (1994) Animality, humanity,
    morality, society in T Ingold (ed) What is an
    animal? Routledge
  • Classic typology of production systems
  • Hunting and gathering
  • Pastoralism
  • Agriculture
  • Urban-industrial production

8
Animals are good to think with
  • Hunter-gatherers Totemism, agency, personhood
  • Pastoralism herds replicas of human society
  • Agriculturalism taming of the wild, macho
  • Urban-industrial animals marginalised,
    anthropomorphised

9
Dualism
  • Aristotle animals dont have souls
  • Enlightenment animals not capable of reason
  • Descartes animals are like machines, unable to
    feel pain
  • Currently animals dont have language

10
Language
  • Tim Ingold (1994) The animal in the study of
    humanity in T Ingold (ed) What is an animal?
    Routledge
  • Lewis Henry Morgan and the beaver
  • Marx, architects, spiders and bees
  • Imaginary blueprint

11
Habitual action
  • Distinction between
  • Novel products of intentional design
  • Habitual replication of traditional forms
  • Distinction between
  • Conversation
  • Communication

12
Thinking
  • Language is an instrument of thought (Ingold)
  • Animals communicate without thinking
  • The signals they transmit correspond to bodily
    states not concepts
  • Most action is habitual

13
Difference
  • the differences between our species and others
    are probably of a comparable order, neither much
    greater nor much less, than those that separate
    non-human species from one another. Humans are
    unique, but not with any unique sort of
    uniqueness (Fernandez-Armesto, 200436 in
    Anderson 20076).

14
Jaques Derrida
  • French philosopher
  • http//www.youtube.com/watch?vRy49Jr0TFjk

15
Non-dualistic ontology
  • Ingold key reading (wk 2)
  • Critiques idea that nature is culturally
    constructed
  • Hunter-gatherer ontology of dwelling
  • Immersed in dwelt in world not detached from it
    as mind
  • Entire persons vs disembodied minds

16
Personhood
  • Western thought animals are not persons
  • For the Cree (northern hunters) personhood
    applies to human, non-human animals, non-animal
    kinds
  • Human persons are not set over and against a
    material context of inert nature, but rather are
    one species of person in a network of
    reciprocating persons (Scott cited in Ingold,
    201243)

17
Unity of life
  • Human is one of many outward forms of personhood
  • Unity underpins differentiation
  • Humans and non-humans are alive
  • World is meaningful, meaning not given to the
    world by human mind

18
Summary
  • Answer to question of what is an animal varies
    across time and cultures it relates to the
    question what is it to be human the one defines
    the other.
  • This is a dualistic way of understanding humans
    and animals. Defining animals as other means
    theyre not like us so are outside the moral
    universe.
  • We dont have to look at animals in terms of
    their otherness to humans. All species are
    unique, not just the human species.
Write a Comment
User Comments (0)
About PowerShow.com