Hypatia Symposium: “The Animal” and “The Feminist” by EMILY CLARK

In Hypatia 27.3, a special issue on “Animal Others”, leading feminist animal studies scholars, Lori Gruen (author of Ethics and Animals: An Introduction) and Kari Weil (author of Thinking Animals: Why Animal Studies Now) present exciting new work on the intersections of sex, race, gender, and species. As co-editors of the special issue, Gruen and Weil invited six scholars to reflect on some of the lively debates occurring within this burgeoning new field of scholarship. Join the discussion.

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Title: “The Animal” and “The Feminist”

By: EMILY CLARK

PhD Graduate Student, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Read the full special issue here

Download a PDF of this Symposium

In the Fall of 2011, I attended a day-long animal studies symposium at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. One of the presenters, an anthropologist, began his talk by projecting onto the screen behind him a black-and-white photograph of a kitten. The kitten was hanging crucified from a wire, completely disemboweled, with a cigarette butt sticking jauntily out of its very dead mouth. The presenter proceeded to speak for more than twenty minutes without mentioning a single word about the image. Instead, it loomed from the screen behind him, silently willing us audience members to look at it, and to look away from it. In the final minutes of the panel’s Q and A, in what I can only describe as the tone of someone “willing herself to be calm,” a female graduate student asked the presenter what I am certain was on all of our minds: why that image? His response was to nod knowingly, and state that Continue reading “Hypatia Symposium: “The Animal” and “The Feminist” by EMILY CLARK”