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The human-animal divide: contesting knowledge production and practices I 
Bernardo Couto Soares (University of Amsterdam)
Cormac Cleary (University of Edinburgh)
Ritti Soncco (CESIE)
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Thursday 24 June, -
Time zone: Europe/Helsinki

Short Abstract:

This panel considers the ecologies, politics, and economies of a global capitalist regime that place nonhuman animals in positions of vulnerability, anxiety, and defiance. The engagement within human-nonhuman interactions with the potentiality of reconstituting knowledge, practices, and relations.

Long Abstract:

The Capitalocene (Haraway, 2016) shapes the relations of interdependence between human beings and other species and is greatly maintained by humanist Western-centered knowledge practices and politics that assume a universalistic “Gods trick” (Haraway 1988) over reality. Within this global regime, labor is more than just human, and globalization translates into Eurocentric networks of resources and intellectual capital. Within these recompositions and relocations of ecosystems, blasted landscapes (Tsing, 2015) translate into ecologies and economies violently collapsing into states of ruin and anxiety, but also of defiance of rules, as in the case of mushrooms growth in nuclear disaster zones (Tsing, 2015) and ticks prospering in areas of deforestation and climate change (Ostfeld, 2011; Pfeiffer, 2018).

Within lively capital (Haraway, 2008), nonhuman animals integrate the multispecies chain of factory farming, the pet industry, or veterinary health. But within biomedical practices, the engagement within human-nonhuman interactions have the potentiality for “thinking with care” (Puig de la Bellacasa, 2017) as a relational force that resists moralistic visions. And even within the precarious conditions of a dairy farm, there is a possibility for the construction of different knowledge that question the human-animal divide, by acknowledging non-human language in cows (Leonie, 2019).

Our speakers are encouraged to consider possibilities of thinking and living in a multispecies world that defies dominant capitalist culture. Which relations and practices may be considered? Which knowledge production politics should be contested? How can we decolonize politics and science? What ethics are possible within a more-than-human living?

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Thursday 24 June, 2021, -