Shared spaces: perspectives on animal architecture 
Sophie Elpers (Meertens Institute, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences)
Michaela Fenske (Universität Würzburg)
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Material culture and museums
VG 2.103
Start time:
28 March, 2017 at 10:45 (UTC+0)
Session slots:

Short Abstract:

The panel takes the ideas of animal architecture as its starting point to examine how human building activity and its material cultures allow(ed) - and ask(ed) for - ways of living together of humans and animals and what kind of social entities came and come into being.

Long Abstract

The recently developing field of animal architecture is seen as an important field towards a common future of humans and animals in an entangled world: under the slogan of "cospecies and cospacing," animal architectures are looking for creative forms of living together of humans and animals. In a historical perspective, as well as in contemporary everyday experience, there are numerous examples of human-animal co-habiting. Swallows for example were welcome to inhabit the stables of European farmhouses since many centuries, living together with humans and their so-called domesticated animals; in today's cities foxes share the urban space with human inhabitants.

The panel asks what human building activity and its material cultures allow in order to create ways of living together, and what they limit. Against the theoretical backdrop of Human-Animal Studies and the concept of "becoming with" as a relational process between humans and animals we examine on which perceptions, narratives and negotiations about human-animal relationships animal architectures are based and which orders of the human and non-human world they express. How do animals deal with human-made buildings? What kind of social entities of humans and animals come into being? We welcome contributions which discuss these and other questions on an empirical and/or theoretical basis and would like to learn from contemporary examples or future plans as well as from historical approaches.

This is a panel of the SIEF Working Group "Historical Approaches in Cultural Analysis".

Accepted papers: