New CfHAS Visiting Professor

We are delighted to welcome Professor Jody Berland (York Univerisity, Canada) as a CfHAS Visiting Professor. Jody is Principal Investigator on the Digital Animalities project which is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. Jody will deliver a research seminar paper ‘The animal is the medium: media history, medium theory, and the ghost of the giraffe’ on 5th April 2017.

‘Plant strong’ Jason gives talk at new Edge Hill Vegans meeting

edgehill vegans

The first meeting of the newly formed Edge Hill Vegans & Vegan Friends group on 3rd February was a raging success, with ‘plant strong,’ Wirral-based, strength trainer Jason Elliott giving a talk on his experience becoming a vegan strength trainer to a room full of Edge Hill vegans and vegan curious people.

The new group has been created as part of the work of the Centre for Human Animal Studies, with a view to connecting vegan and vegan curious staff and students at Edge Hill University. The first meeting was held in conjunction with the university’s ‘Health and Wellbeing Day,’ hence Jason being perfect as a speaker.

Strength trainer Jason Elliott spoke about being vegan in the strength training world, and the importance of strength training for sedentary lifestyles. Attendees were also invited to bring food, as a potluck, so there was vegan chocolate tiffin, fruit and gram four omelette to munch on, as well as smoothies from David Crawford, who has a smoothie stall in The Hub.

Watch this space for more details about further meetings and presentations, and feel free to join the group on Facebook, below!

Edge Hill Vegans & Vegan Friends Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1666990243560582/

Jason Elliott website: http://www.personaltrainerwirral.com/

FILM AND THE ENVIRONMENT | 6th May 2016

FILM AND THE ENVIRONMENT | 6th May 2016
A Cross-Disciplinary Symposium hosted by the School of Art, Media, and American Studies and the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia Friday 6th May 2016, 9am – 5.15pm, The Enterprise Centre, UEA

Global climate change and environmental hazards are significant threats to the future of life on Earth. Recent scientific observations have shown the impact of anthropogenic activity on climate and highlighted the severity of projected changes on the environment. Effects will be felt through increases in weather extremes (storms, floods, landslides and droughts), compounded by the expansion of human populations into marginal ‘at risk’ areas. The use of film in documenting and communicating these impacts to a broad audience has grown substantially in recent years. This is attested to by the proliferation of green film festivals, increased production of public information films on environmental challenges, and the engagement of fiction film with environmental themes. Film has come to bridge the gap between environmental activists, educationalists, academics and the general public.

This cross-disciplinary symposium focuses upon the intersection of film and environmentalism. Using the term ‘film’ in its broadest sense, to refer to moving image works that can be viewed via cinema, television or computer screens, we aim to foster knowledge exchange and generate dialogue between academics from the arts and humanities, philosophy, social and political sciences, and environmental sciences disciplines.

We invite contributions that address any aspect concerned with the making and uses of film in relation to environmental issues. Topics might address, but are not limited to, the following:

Climate Action and film
Environmental film festivals
Gender and the environmental film
Risk communication and film
Ethics and aesthetics in the Eco-Film
Genre and/or narrative theory
Issues of reception, affect, and impact
Environmental politics and film
Eco-critical approaches to film
Eco-feminism and film
Marketing and production
Environmental film and public learning

We invite 15-20 minute paper proposals, and are also happy to consider proposals for alternative presentation formats. Proposals should have a full title and a 100-200 word abstract and should be sent to Christine Cornea by email: C.Cornea@uea.ac.uk

Deadline for proposals: 5pm Monday 29th February 2016

This symposium is being held as part of the programme for the Green Film Festival @ UEA research and engagement event, which will take place during the first week of May 2016. In partnership with the UK Green Film Festival, this event will include evening screenings of the 2016 festival winning  and an interactive exhibition, which contributors to the symposium are also welcome to attend. The symposium and all other Green Film Festival @ UEA events will be free to attend, but please be aware that we do not have funding to cover contributor travel and other expenses.

British Animal Studies Network meeting – 15th and 16th May 2015

In a series of ‘senses’ as a topic, the first meeting of 2015 for the British Animal Studies Network took place at the University of Strathcylde with a theme of ‘tasting’.

The collection of presentations and panels was eclectic, covering an immensely varied range of disciplines and focuses. For example, Bel Deering from the RSPCA talked about trying to improve the public image of seagulls, as she claimed that cruelty to them in the UK seems to stem from the view that they are a ‘menace’ and steal food. Michelle Bastian, from the University of Edinburgh, broke academic boundaries with her poetic and prose-like paper, which talked about how jaguars have developed a taste for leatherback turtles – a very endangered species.

The two plenary speakers especially resonated from a critical animal studies perspective. The first came from Guy Cook, professor of language at King’s College London. His paper “I still do love the taste”: the language of beliefs about eating animals’, spoke about the language used to justify and promote the eating of animals, drawing from the three year project he is involved with called ”People’, ‘Products’, ‘Pets’ and ‘Pests.”

The second plenary was from Brett Mizelle, professor of history from California Long beach University. His paper was ‘The cultural work of “bacon mania” and transformations in the making of pigs and pork in America’. This examined the hypervisibility of bacon in modern society, while considering how structures keep identification with the pig obscured.

The other papers presented ranged in variety from covering food activism, pigeon fancying in the 19th and 20th centuries, the meaning of birdsong, and even on the diet of witches’ familiars in early modern England.

The next meeting is to be held in Cardiff on 9th and 10th October 2015, and focuses on the theme of ‘Cold Blood(ed)’:

http://www.britishanimalstudiesnetwork.org.uk/FutureMeetings/ColdBlooded.aspx

Andrea Wren

CfHAS conference

We are delighted to confirm the keynote speakers at the inaugural CfHAS Conference 25th October 2014 are: Professor Elisa Aaltola (University of Eastern Finland / University of Turku), Professor Jonathan Balcombe (Humane Society Institute for Science and Policy) and Dr Richard Twine (University of London / CfHAS).

The call for papers closes on 31 July 2014.

New CfHAS Visiting Research Fellow

Dr Richard Twine has been appointed as Visiting Research Fellow. Dr Twine’s current research focuses on sustainable food transitions with an emphasis on questioning the centrality of the norms of animal consumption. His book, From the Margins to the Centre? The Rise of Critical Animal Studies, in collaboration with Nik Taylor (Flinders University, Australia), has been recently published.

Ecological Public Health debate

Thanks to the Vegan Society, a transcript of the talk by Professor Claire Molloy given at the Green Party Conference on March 1st 2014, is now available as a pdf. The talk was part of the Ecological Public Health, Policy for Health, Social Justice and Sustainability Fringe Debate at The Green Party Conference organised by The Vegan Society. 2014-GPEW-Spring-Fringe-Ecological-Public-Health-transcript