By Sarah E. McFarl, Ryan Hediger, Sarah E. McFarland
This assortment examines the query of nonhuman animal employer through moving emphasis from the human viewpoint towards that of different animals, exploring modes of animal resistance to human behaviors, and contemplating the methods the presence of animals refracts human notions like company and species.
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Additional resources for Animals and Agency (Human-Animal Studies)
As John T. Sanders explains: “[J]ust as caves afford hiding and chairs afford sitting, just as electronic microscopes may afford holding the door open or winning the Nobel Prize, symbolic entities . . offer a variety of affordances for organisms able to notice 29 Gibson, The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. Reed, Encountering the World. , 19. , 28. 33 For examples please see John B. Watson, “Psychology as the Behaviorist Views It,” Psychological Review 20 (1912): 158–77 and B. F. Skinner, The Behavior of Organisms: An Experimental Analysis (New York: Appleton-Century, 1938).
Likewise, another relevant structure attached to the wall was active in, and meaningful for, either facilitating or inhibiting opportunities for tactile interactions. A one-foot-wide ledge at the base of the interactive wall on the pool side ran along the entire perimeter, and was situated just below the surface of the water. With the ledge as part of the hybrid performance, a dolphin was presented with several opportunities for action. In one scenario, a dolphin could approach the wall and lean against the ledge to hold a steady position with her/his mouth open, and solicit the giving of a fish and/or allow the human’s hand to reach over and make contact.
121. whale agency 39 and thereby look directly at each other, to make eye contact. However, it appeared that most of the time the social affordances that Reed identifies as embodiments of “propriety” did not occur via the window. ”52 Intentions make a huge difference. Attempting to communicate and engage with whales, as fellow subjects, through an underwater viewing window can, in some cases, be proper behaviour. However, looking through a window to watch the private lives of others, and to objectify the whales by not expecting them to look back and with no intention to allow oneself to be seen, is not.