uu.seUppsala University Publications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
The horse, in his present condition of slavery: Alienation and Self-Realization in the Riding School
School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Mälardalen University. (HumAnimal Group, Cultural Matters Group)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9902-1191
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

What do riding school pupils talk about? Like most of us, they complain about their jobs. This Swedish riding school ethnography shows how pupils turn the riding school into a sphere of intimacy separated from everyday life. The riding lessons can serve as a break from a stressful job, a demanding family situation, or a personal crisis. And although teachers continuously judge the pupils’ performance, riders say that they gladly subject themselves to critique. Everything is focused on reaching the few, fleeting and euphoric moments when riders feel that they are one with the horse. Because of these moments, some even talk about riding as a path to self-realization.

 

The discussion of the ethnographic material is guided by the comparison between the situation of women and horses Charlotte Perkins Gilman makes in her classic Women and Economics from 1898: horses and women are in the same “condition of slavery” as they are economically dependent on men. Transposed to the present empirical setting—my informants are either woman or horse—the analogy sheds light on the inequality between humans and horses. The riding school can help humans transcend the capitalist condition of “slavery” for a moment, but many informants realize that to do so, they contribute to subjugating the horses to the elaborate disciplinary and administrative apparatus. The paper thus argues that the riding school can only provide riders with a sort of melancholic escapism that can never fundamentally challenge the present condition of slavery.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Turku, 2018.
Keywords [en]
Animal studies, centaurs, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Horses, human-animal studies, Karl Marx, riding schools
National Category
Sociology
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-376966OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-376966DiVA, id: diva2:1288106
Conference
Un(Common) Worlds: Human-Animal Studies Conference, August 7–9, 2018
Projects
Intimitetens sociala former
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 421-2014-1465Available from: 2019-02-12 Created: 2019-02-12 Last updated: 2019-02-12

Open Access in DiVA

No full text in DiVA

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Redmalm, David
Sociology

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar

urn-nbn

Altmetric score

urn-nbn
Total: 14 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf