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Writing 5: Animals in Contemporary Literature

Professor Nancy Crumbine

Getting Started with Animal Studies

A guide to library resources for researchers interested in the interdisciplinary field of animal studies.

Have questions?  AskUs!  or contact me directly for assistance.  See the tabs on the side to find books, articles, and more.


Don't know where to start?  Consider these categories compiled by the Animals Studies program at Michigan State University

Animals as Philosophical and Ethical Subjects

... the philosophical and ethical underpinnings regarding our treatment of animals.

Animals as Reflexive Thinkers

... the use of language and other methods of communication among animals, including cross-species cooperation, as well as human perceptions of animal mindedness.

Domestication and Predation

... deal with hunting and the domestication of animals, including discussions of animal economies such as the commodification of animals for their end products (note there is a separate Animals as Food category).

Animals as Entertainment and Spectacle

... the historical and contemporary use of animals as entertainment and spectacle, such as in zoos, circuses and marine animal theme parks.

Animals as Companions

... the numerous issues related to the keeping of companion animals, such as the literature on the human-animal bond and the abuse of companion animals.

Animals as Symbols

... the various ways in which animals are used as symbols in human society. This includes animals as symbols of a nation, country or social group and a myriad of other instances of animals as representations of human culture.

Animals in Science, Education and Therapy

... the use of animals in science (both the natural and social scientific sciences), education and in human therapy and rehabilitation.

Animals in History

... regarding a specific time period or historical overviews of animals and the human-animal relationship.

Animals as Food

... the use and perception of animals as food as well as the numerous debates surrounding the practices required to consume animals.

Animals in Literature, Art and Popular Culture

... includes both fictional and nonfictional citations regarding animals in literature, art and other forms of popular culture including advertisements and magazines.

Animals in Feminism and Ecofeminism

... concerning ecofeminism, the interlinking of feminist and animal issues, and feminist perspectives on animals.

Animals in Religion, Myth, and Folktales

... animals in religion, myth and folktales from around the world. This category will include subjects such as animism, totemism, ritual and sacrifice, religious perceptions of animals, and mythologies.

Conservation, Wildlife and Human/Animal Conflict

... address wildlife issues, various conflicts that have occurred or continue to take place between humans and animals, as well as international and local conservation efforts.