Keynote Address by Kari Weil
“Animal Studies: The Ends of Empathy and Beginnings of Reading”
(University Professor of Letters at Wesleyan University
and author of Thinking Animals: Why Animal Studies Now?)
Presented by the University of Chicago’s Animal Studies Workshop
Sponsored by the Center for International Studies, the Council on Advanced Studies, the Smart Museum, the Franke Institute for the Humanities, the Department of Germanic Studies, and the John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought.
As scholars from a broad range of disciplines increasingly find themselves in conversation about animals, the question of why and how we do Animal Studies persists.
What is it that draws a multiplicity of voices into this conversation, and how can they productively engage with one another? Why has this field of inquiry gained such traction in recent decades? How is Animal Studies taking shape as a field that overlaps multiple discourses and disciplines, and what opportunities or difficulties arise as a result? How do different methodologies clarify or substantiate one another, fill knowledge gaps, and illuminate unknown aspects of individual areas of interest?
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