Accepted Paper:

Workers in flesh: farmers, hunters and intimate killing  
Catie Gressier (University of Western Australia)

Paper short abstract:

In the climate change era, meat eating is increasingly vilified. This paper explores how a subset of Victorian and West Australian farmers and hunters are re-configuring killing around an ethic of intimacy in their efforts to promote ecological sustainability, animal welfare and human health.

Paper long abstract:

Farmers and hunters describe pursuing their vocations largely for love of the land, and the animals and plants it sustains. So how do they come to terms with killing animals, particularly in an era where climate change and widespread ecological decline, and increasing concern for the rights of animals, have resulted in their practices being subject to sustained and often vociferous opposition? Among agroecological farmers, resistance to the detriments of the intensification and expansion of scale characterising industrial meat production is embedded in mechanisms such as anti-growth models and onsite abattoirs. In the same vein, hunters argue that being present and accountable is the only means of killing ethically. This paper explores the intimate killing valued by this subset of Victorian and West Australian farmers and hunters who take ecological sustainability, animal welfare and human health seriously in their pursuit of ethical meat production.

Panel P19
Flesh in an age of death