CFP: [18th] Special Journal Issue: Representing Animals

full name / name of organization: 
Glynis Ridley

Representing Animals

When Malebranche agreed with Descartes that animals ‘eat without
pleasure, cry without pain, grow without knowing it; they desire nothing,
fear nothing, know nothing’, he articulated an attitude towards the
animal kingdom that is often assumed to be that of the majority of
seventeenth- and eighteenth-century natural philosophers. Yet it is not
only modern critics who have characterized this view of animals as
automata as an ‘irredeemably fatuous belief’: a host of eighteenth-
century writers and artists challenge these Cartesian assumptions,
implicitly and explicitly, at every turn. For every text of the period
that uses animal figures for allegoric or satiric purposes, there is
another that invites consideration of animals as sentient â€" and
sympathetic - beings.

Proposals are sought for contributions to a special edition of The
Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies (formerly known as the British
Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies) to appear in 2010 on the subject
of Representing Animals in the Eighteenth-Century. (Those unfamiliar with
the Journal should note that it is concerned with a ‘long eighteenth
century’ from 1650-1820.)

Subjects may include, but are not limited to:

Cartesian automata and feeling beings;
Enlightenment animal ethics;
animals in natural histories, encyclopedias and scientific treatises;
collecting, displaying and describing the animal kingdom;
unearthing the fossil record;
changing metaphors - from the Great Chain of Being to the Tree of Life;

representing an animal’s point of view;
animals in art and sculpture;
artists and their animals/the animal as muse;
hunters and hunted;
the domestic and the exotic;
animal husbandry;

satirizing public figures;
animals in fables, myths and folklore;
the use of animal characters in children’s literature and/or sentimental
animals and it-narratives;
celebrating and eulogizing animals;
the changing symbolism of animals.

Please email proposals (of approximately 800 words) and a brief CV to the
volume’s editor, Dr Glynis Ridley, Department of English, University of
Louisville: Proposals are due by 1
September 2008. (Finished papers of approximately 6000 words will be due
no later than 30 April 2009). The editor welcomes queries about this
special issue of the Journal.

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Received on Wed Jul 09 2008 - 14:01:01 EDT