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Anthropomorphism And The Animal Subject

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Chapter Summary

In this chapter, the author argues that anthropomorphism is unavoidable given that humans interpret the natural world and other animals through their own embodied materiality. The central premise of this chapter is that there is a need to create spaces where one can see and record what it is that humans and non-humans do when they interact, not presume the very phenomena one claims to be investigating in the first place. This involves adopting a post-humanist approach toward human-animal relations. Anthropomorphism as a cultural practice is alive and well. Instead of analysing anthropomorphism in terms of its accuracy, or inaccuracy, the chapter seeks to analyse the functions of anthropomorphism as a set of cultural practices and discourses. Actor-network theory is not so much a theory as it is a philosophical/epistemological position.

Keywords: actor-network theory; anthropomorphism; human-animal relations



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