Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Animals and humans: A false divide?

Date:
June 5, 2013
Source:
SAGE Publications
Summary:
We don't just share our lives with animals; we are animals -- a reality that we often choose to forget in modern Western culture. New research delves deeper into our relationship with other creatures, critically examining our own animal nature, and looking at how animals profoundly influence our culture -- perhaps more so than we had initially thought.

We don't just share our lives with animals; we are animals -- a reality that we often choose to forget in modern Western culture. Research published in the June special issue of SAGE journal, Social Science Information (SSI), delves deeper into our relationship with other creatures, critically examining our own animal nature, and looking at how animals profoundly influence our culture -- perhaps more so than we had initially thought.

Related Articles


We have often been told in Western thought that the human species is one that is highly developed, above that of the animal kingdom, a division that is clear cut and one that clearly sets the human species apart. Yet Dominique Lestel, a highly influential researcher studying animality (our animal nature), opposes the separation of human and animal life. Lestel ask us to reframe the question of animality, asking us to view humanization as an ongoing performative practice, rather than an historical threshold that was crossed long ago.

Looking at the relationship between animal and human, Lestel argues that species loss has both an ecological and symbolic consequence on our culture, as every species contributes to our very being, our meaning. He warns that "each species that disappears is a part of our imagination that we amputate perhaps irreversibly."

According to Lestel, the question is "not that of knowing how I share my life with others, but how others shape me and how I shape others," The work focuses on the interrelatedness of all animals (humans included), where more usually we tend to highlight the boundaries between us.

In addition to humans' place in the animal kingdom at a scientific level, Lestel also highlights our essential, existential animality in his opening comments with fellow editor, Hollis Taylor. "A key question now is to know how the human of the 21st century can reactivate his animality and animalize himself anew when all Western thought since the Greeks tells him that he is human precisely because of this rupture with animality," Lestel suggests, building on his critique of the very philosophical foundations of the ethological tradition. "To be human does not mean to have fled animality, but on the contrary to live within it and to let it live within us…we are animals and animals are us."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by SAGE Publications. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. J. Bussolini. Recent French, Belgian and Italian work in the cognitive science of animals: Dominique Lestel, Vinciane Despret, Roberto Marchesini and Giorgio Celli. Social Science Information, 2013; 52 (2): 187 DOI: 10.1177/0539018413477938

Cite This Page:

SAGE Publications. "Animals and humans: A false divide?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130605133712.htm>.
SAGE Publications. (2013, June 5). Animals and humans: A false divide?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 25, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130605133712.htm
SAGE Publications. "Animals and humans: A false divide?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130605133712.htm (accessed January 25, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Newsy (Jan. 24, 2015) A string of black bear attacks has Florida officials considering lifting the ban on hunting the animals to control their population. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Killing Large Portion Of Ape Population

Ebola Killing Large Portion Of Ape Population

Newsy (Jan. 23, 2015) Experts estimate Ebola has wiped out one-third of the world&apos;s gorillas and chimpanzees. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Controversy Shrouds Captive Killer Whale in Miami

Controversy Shrouds Captive Killer Whale in Miami

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) Activists hope the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA) will label killer whales endangered, allowing lawyers to sue a Miami aquarium to release an orca into the wild after 44 years. Jillian Kitchener reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
‘Healthy’ Foods That Surprisingly Pack on Pounds

‘Healthy’ Foods That Surprisingly Pack on Pounds

Buzz60 (Jan. 23, 2015) Some &apos;healthy&apos; foods are actually fattening. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) shines a light on the sneaky foods like nuts, seeds, granola, trail mix, avocados, guacamole, olive oil, peanut butter, fruit juices and salads that are good for you...but not so much for your waistline. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins