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Accepted Paper:

Imagining transhumance: representations of humans, animals and the movement of reciprocity  
Paolo Palladino (Rijksuniversiteit Groningen) Annalisa Colombino (University of Graz)

Paper short abstract:

We offer an analysis of an artistic performance commemorating the practice of transhumance. We articulate three different perspectives on transhumance and conclude that movement is key to understanding relations between human and non-human animals

Paper long abstract:

In this paper we offer an analysis of TransHumance, an artistic performance by Théâtre du Centaure which seeks to commemorate the pastoral practice of transhumance. Our analysis focuses on the attention that the performance devotes to movement, and is articulated from three different vantage points, namely from the vantage points of political economy, assemblage theory and philosophical critique. The first of these vantage points shows how the movement of transhumant herds calls for a re-examination of the ways in which non-human animals are transformed into sources of profit and capital. Assemblage theory exposes the limits of this first vantage point and draws attention to a richer understanding of the relationship between human and non-human animals. We argue, however, that this second vantage point also obscures power relations and the individuality of the human and animal agents involved in the transhumant assemblage. We conclude our analysis by developing an alternative, third vantage point. We approach TransHumance as the work of art that it is and propose that the intermittent appearance of a horse's blinking eye forces us to think about movement itself. This, we argue, is key to understanding how transhumance challenges very profoundly contemporary configurations of the relationship between human and non-human animals.

Panel Rur03
Transforming transhumance pastoralism, 'heritagization' and new rural economies
  Session 1 Wednesday 17 April, 2019, -