Displaying Death and Animating Life: Human-Animal Relations in Art, Science, and Everyday Life

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract

In this book, author Jane C. Desmond offers a performative analysis of the social phenomena that construct human-animal relations. Using an interdisciplinary approach, Desmond explores the shared conditions of embodiment and physical copresence that shape human relationships with animals. She begins by examining human interactions with the bodies of non-individuated animals, including museum exhibitions of dead animals and taxidermy displays. Desmond uses the Body Worlds exhibit of plasticized human corpses as a point of contrast to argue that while human corpses are put on display in a way that emphasizes their universality, exhibits featuring dead animal bodies invite genericization. The following sections of the book deal with known or individuated animals such as pets. Desmond analyzes animal burial and mourning practices, paying special attention to pet obituaries and pet cemeteries, and discusses the underlying implications of cross-species kinship. She compares these grieving practices to humans’ uncompassionate treatment of animal roadkill. In the last part of the book, Desmond explores the marketing of animal intimacy, in particular the marketing of artwork created by animals. She focuses on the body traces left by animal artists as well as the distinction between primates and other animals that make art. Ultimately, Desmond uses these various examples to question the complicated politics of human-animal relations and interactions.
Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherUniversity of Chicago Press
Number of pages312
ISBN (Electronic)9780226375519
ISBN (Print)9780226144061, 9780226144054
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2016

Fingerprint

Human-animal Relations
Art and Science
Animals
Everyday Life
Marketing
Interaction
Corpse
Primates
Grieving
Artwork
Intimacy
Museum Exhibitions
Cemetery
Embodiment
Artist
Physical
Burial
Art
Universality
Human Relationships

Keywords

  • animals
  • animal studies
  • taxidermy
  • roadkill
  • kinship
  • animal mourning
  • animal art
  • mourning for animals
  • Body Worlds Exhibition
  • museum displays

Cite this

Displaying Death and Animating Life : Human-Animal Relations in Art, Science, and Everyday Life. / Desmond, Jane C.

University of Chicago Press, 2016. 312 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook

@book{4074d06d4e364bdaaf82540af8045233,
title = "Displaying Death and Animating Life: Human-Animal Relations in Art, Science, and Everyday Life",
abstract = "In this book, author Jane C. Desmond offers a performative analysis of the social phenomena that construct human-animal relations. Using an interdisciplinary approach, Desmond explores the shared conditions of embodiment and physical copresence that shape human relationships with animals. She begins by examining human interactions with the bodies of non-individuated animals, including museum exhibitions of dead animals and taxidermy displays. Desmond uses the Body Worlds exhibit of plasticized human corpses as a point of contrast to argue that while human corpses are put on display in a way that emphasizes their universality, exhibits featuring dead animal bodies invite genericization. The following sections of the book deal with known or individuated animals such as pets. Desmond analyzes animal burial and mourning practices, paying special attention to pet obituaries and pet cemeteries, and discusses the underlying implications of cross-species kinship. She compares these grieving practices to humans’ uncompassionate treatment of animal roadkill. In the last part of the book, Desmond explores the marketing of animal intimacy, in particular the marketing of artwork created by animals. She focuses on the body traces left by animal artists as well as the distinction between primates and other animals that make art. Ultimately, Desmond uses these various examples to question the complicated politics of human-animal relations and interactions.",
keywords = "animals, animal studies, taxidermy, roadkill, kinship, animal mourning, animal art, mourning for animals, Body Worlds Exhibition, museum displays",
author = "Desmond, {Jane C.}",
year = "2016",
month = "8",
doi = "10.7208/chicago/9780226375519.001.0001",
language = "English (US)",
isbn = "9780226144061",
publisher = "University of Chicago Press",

}

TY - BOOK

T1 - Displaying Death and Animating Life

T2 - Human-Animal Relations in Art, Science, and Everyday Life

AU - Desmond, Jane C.

PY - 2016/8

Y1 - 2016/8

N2 - In this book, author Jane C. Desmond offers a performative analysis of the social phenomena that construct human-animal relations. Using an interdisciplinary approach, Desmond explores the shared conditions of embodiment and physical copresence that shape human relationships with animals. She begins by examining human interactions with the bodies of non-individuated animals, including museum exhibitions of dead animals and taxidermy displays. Desmond uses the Body Worlds exhibit of plasticized human corpses as a point of contrast to argue that while human corpses are put on display in a way that emphasizes their universality, exhibits featuring dead animal bodies invite genericization. The following sections of the book deal with known or individuated animals such as pets. Desmond analyzes animal burial and mourning practices, paying special attention to pet obituaries and pet cemeteries, and discusses the underlying implications of cross-species kinship. She compares these grieving practices to humans’ uncompassionate treatment of animal roadkill. In the last part of the book, Desmond explores the marketing of animal intimacy, in particular the marketing of artwork created by animals. She focuses on the body traces left by animal artists as well as the distinction between primates and other animals that make art. Ultimately, Desmond uses these various examples to question the complicated politics of human-animal relations and interactions.

AB - In this book, author Jane C. Desmond offers a performative analysis of the social phenomena that construct human-animal relations. Using an interdisciplinary approach, Desmond explores the shared conditions of embodiment and physical copresence that shape human relationships with animals. She begins by examining human interactions with the bodies of non-individuated animals, including museum exhibitions of dead animals and taxidermy displays. Desmond uses the Body Worlds exhibit of plasticized human corpses as a point of contrast to argue that while human corpses are put on display in a way that emphasizes their universality, exhibits featuring dead animal bodies invite genericization. The following sections of the book deal with known or individuated animals such as pets. Desmond analyzes animal burial and mourning practices, paying special attention to pet obituaries and pet cemeteries, and discusses the underlying implications of cross-species kinship. She compares these grieving practices to humans’ uncompassionate treatment of animal roadkill. In the last part of the book, Desmond explores the marketing of animal intimacy, in particular the marketing of artwork created by animals. She focuses on the body traces left by animal artists as well as the distinction between primates and other animals that make art. Ultimately, Desmond uses these various examples to question the complicated politics of human-animal relations and interactions.

KW - animals

KW - animal studies

KW - taxidermy

KW - roadkill

KW - kinship

KW - animal mourning

KW - animal art

KW - mourning for animals

KW - Body Worlds Exhibition

KW - museum displays

U2 - 10.7208/chicago/9780226375519.001.0001

DO - 10.7208/chicago/9780226375519.001.0001

M3 - Book

SN - 9780226144061

SN - 9780226144054

BT - Displaying Death and Animating Life

PB - University of Chicago Press

ER -