Comparative literature and animal studies
DOI link for Comparative literature and animal studies
Comparative literature and animal studies book
Everyone knows that animals frequently appear in literature and that literature, from its inception, has used animals in a variety of imaginative and figural registers. The comparison between animals and humans can thus be said to be the condition of possibility of representation and, to the extent that comparison gives rise to metaphor, it is also the condition of possibility of literature itself since literature is the giving of wing to metaphor. Animal studies are a relatively new interdisciplinary field of inquiry concerned with the political, ethical, social, and cultural status of animals. The representation of animals is as old as representation itself, but it is only relatively recently that the question of animal representativeness – the rights of animals, broadly construed – has become part of our discourse about animals. Animal studies, of course, is not the only way to pry open the traditional categories of comparative literature.