Posthumanism, Ecofeminism, and Inter-Species Relations

Authored by: Greta Gaard

Routledge Handbook of Gender and Environment

Print publication date:  June  2017
Online publication date:  July  2017

Print ISBN: 9780415707749
eBook ISBN: 9781315886572
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315886572.ch7

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Abstract

Initially prompted by post–World War II technologically inflected anxieties about human fallibility, and later influenced by postmodern and poststructuralist theories, posthumanism emerged to critical acclaim through the appearance of texts such as Jacques Derrida’s ‘The Animal That Therefore I Am (More to Follow)’ (2002), Karen Barad’s ‘Posthumanist Performativity’ (2003), Donna Haraway’s The Companion Species Manifesto (2003), and Cary Wolfe’s Zoontologies: The Question of the Animal (2003). In the last decade, the academic acclaim for posthumanism’s animal studies branch has become widely visible through the presence of new book series at university presses, new journals, new courses in human-animal studies across the curriculum at prestigious universities, numerous conferences, professional societies, and caucuses of professional societies (Wolfe 2009). Of particular interest to feminists, whose work on ‘the question of the animal’ has been traced from nineteenth century women’s activism (ranging from abolitionism to the anti-plumage movement) through Feminists for Animal Rights in the 1980s and beyond (Adams and Gruen 2014), are the ways scholarly interest in posthumanism and animal studies intersects with, builds upon, or ignores feminist and ecofeminist commitments to both theorizing and enacting gender, racial, and inter-species justice. While more than a decade’s worth of publications has proven that posthumanist philosophy and animal studies have been good for academic institutions and academic careers, the question remains: Have these scholarly developments also been good for animals?

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