1st Edition

Outside the Anthropological Machine Crossing the Human-Animal Divide and Other Exit Strategies

Edited By Chiara Mengozzi Copyright 2020
    292 Pages 23 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    292 Pages 23 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    In the midst of the climate crisis and the threat of the sixth extinction, we can no longer claim to be the masters of nature. Rather, we need to unlearn our species’ arrogance for the sake of all animals, human and non-human. Rethinking our being-in-the-world as Homo sapiens, this monograph argues, starts precisely from the way we relate to our closer companion species. The authors gathered here endeavour to find multiple exit strategies from the anthropocentric paradigms that have bound the human and social sciences. Part I investigates the unexplored margins of human history by re-reading historical events, literary texts, and scientific findings from an animal’s perspective, rather than a human’s. Part II explores different forms of human-animal relationships, putting the emphasis on the institutions, spaces, and discourses that frame our interactions with animals. Part III engages with processes of "translation" that aim to render animals’ experience and perception into human words and visual language.


    Ways Out of the Anthropological Machine, or How and Why to Defamiliarize Ourselves

    Chiara Mengozzi

    Part I

    "Playing a Part in the Dramaturgy of the Real": (Hi)story on the Side of Animals

    1. A Giraffe’s Journey to France (18261827): Recording the Encounter From the Animal’s Point of View

    Éric Baratay

    2. Structures of Captivity and Animal Agency: The London Zoo, ca. 1865 to the Present Times

    Violette Pouillard

    3. Atlantic History From the Saddle: The Role of Horses in the Slave-Trading Atlantic World

    Rachael L. Pasierowska

    4. Re-animalizing Animals, Re-animating Humans

    Michał Krzykawski

    5. Laika’s Lullabies: Post-anthropocentric Representations of the First Dog in Space

    Anita Jarzyna

    6. The Blind Spot of the Plot: Thinking Beyond Human With Karel Čapek

    Chiara Mengozzi

    Part II

    "I Relate, Therefore I Am": Human-Animal Encounters

    7. Animals and Their Keepers in Belle Époque Postcards of the Jardin des Plantes Menagerie

    Maria P. Gindhart

    8. "Seeing Eye to Eye, Through a Glass Clearly"? Blurring the Boundary Between Humans and Animals

    Quentin Montagne

    9. Flesh, Fur, and Forgetting

    Kari Weil

    10. Animals as Monsters,Victims, and Models in the Age of Decadence

    Eva Voldřichová Beránková

    Part III

    "Across the Narrow Abyss of Non-comprehension": Entering Animals’ Lives

    11. Literature and Animal Expressiveness: On the Cognitive and Ethic Aspects of Zoopoetics

    Anne Simon

    12. "Une langue ou une musique inouïe, assez inhumaine…": Narrative Voice and the Question of the Animal

    Kári Driscoll

    13. From Being a Beast to Becoming-Animal: Literary Experiments in Crossing the Species Divide

    Jonathan Pollock

    14. Cameras That Pose as Animals: Imagining Non-human Animals Through the POV Shot

    Concepción Cortés Zulueta

    15. Playing (With) the Non-human: The Animal Avatar in Bear Simulator

    Michael Fuchs


    Chiara Mengozzi is a researcher at Charles University in Prague (Faculty of Arts), where she teaches literary theory, as well as Italian and French contemporary literatures. She is also Associated Researcher at CEFRES in Prague (French Research Center in Social Sciences). Her research focuses on animal studies, ecocriticism, climate fiction, postcolonial and migrant literatures, world literature, and translation and reception theory. She is the author of an Italian monograph entitled Narrazioni contese. Vent’anni di scritture italiane della migrazione (2013). She is currently investigating the relation between science and literature in the context of climate change.