European Summer School in Human-Animal Studies
We are inviting applications for the European Summer School “Interspecies Relationality” (ESSIR) that will take place at the University of Kassel from 28 July to 4 August 2019. The deadline for applications will be 31 March 2019.
“Relationality” has been a central approach to the development of Human-Animal Studies as a field of academic inquiry. Therein, the reevaluation of human-animal relations has so far followed primarily an assessment of the individual entities in a relation, followed by a comparison that establishes corresponding or differing capacities, or the effects one has on the other. More than looking at the relation as such, relationality follows here as a consequence a comparative approach, from which insights on the relationship are deduced.
ESSIR aims at further refining and expanding relationality as a methodological lens for HAS by focusing on interspecies relationality and making the relation our analytical priority. The focus, then, becomes studying the interrelation and interdependency itself, as well as the mutual coproduction, influencing and curtailing of the entities in a relation, and thus to always think of entities within and through their relations to others. In addition to this conceptual refinement of relationality, we also call for explicitly expanding the perspective of relationality as well by asking about relations between nonhuman animals, of the same species, across different species, and between groups of animals.
The program will offer a shared space of critical inquiry to explore and develop interspecies relationality as a methodological research approach in close connection with the participants own projects. It will bring the participants’ work-in-progress to the attention of a network of influential HAS scholars, and provides the participants with the guidance and feedback to develop their work.
ESSIR’s faculty comprises of leaders in HAS that simultaneously serve as representatives of established research initiatives and groups throughout Europe as well as the Animals & Society Institute (USA). In addition to developing “Interspecies Relationality” as a research approach, ESSIR thus provides an opportunity for early career scholars to build their professional networks with established researchers in the field of HAS. Participants should expect a stimulating intellectual environment reflecting a diversity of approaches, projects, disciplinary backgrounds, and ethical positions on animal issues.
The Summer School is co-hosted by Mieke Roscher and André Krebber (Resident Directors) alongside Margo DeMello and Kenneth Shapiro (ASI).