The Edinburgh Companion to Animal Studies

Turner, Lynn; Sellbach, Undine and Broglio, Ron, eds. 2018. The Edinburgh Companion to Animal Studies. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 9781474418416 [Edited Book]

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Abstract or Description

Commissioned in 2013 in recognition of the growth across the Arts and Humanities in Animal Studies, this book was specifically directed to world-leading expertise that would position it as ‘cutting-edge’ rather than an introductory volume, demonstrating the range of disciplines and topics rethought by this new scholarship. As lead editor I sought out 2 further editors best placed to connect with the widest range of scholars (Broglio, based in Arizona; Sellbach then based in Sydney). It comprises 34 commissioned substantial chapters plus a co-written editorial introduction, plus an afterword and endorsement by two of the most influential scholars in the field, Wolfe and Haraway. All chapters were subject to rigorous editorial feedback and revision and in some cases external referees were also sought. All contributors are established scholars, in many cases, already highly prominent (e.g. Morton, Despret, Yusoff).

The introduction was not a summary but made its own intervention into the developments over the last 20 years in Animal Studies engaging work by Haraway, Wolfe and Derrida in particular by means of an analysis of the artwork on the cover by Olly and Suzi. This exposed a wider turn towards ‘ethics’ beyond strategic appeals to ‘rights’ and consequently both a greater investment in continental philosophy as well as new engagements with ethology and the more systemic question of the impact of climate change upon the living in general.

My chapter - ‘Voice’ – bridged ethological investigation into cetacean communication since the 1960’s, contemporary investigation into acoustic ecology and the philosophy of Derrida. While Derrida’s influential The Animal That Therefore I Am (2008) was prominent throughout the Companion, I drew on Of Grammatology (1976) to examine the ways in which Rousseau’s On The Origin of Languages (1781) may not be able to exclude nonhuman species after all. It thus contributes original research to more than one field.

The co-authored substantial introduction and chapter ('Voice') are both linked in this entry and listed as separate GRO entries.

Item Type:

Edited Book

Additional Information:

A paperback edition of the book was published by Edinburgh University Press in November 2019 ISBN: 9781474458528


Ethics; animals; continental philosophy; Posthumanities; ecological humanities; anthropocentrism.

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Visual Cultures


31 March 2018

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Date Deposited:

14 May 2015 14:47

Last Modified:

28 Apr 2021 07:39


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