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  • 1.
    Iversen, Clara
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, HUMUS.
    Barack Obamas dilemma2008In: n()n()a()g()e()n()t(): om kunskap, kärlek och ingenting särskiljt / [ed] Sverre Wide, Fredrik Palm & Vessela Misheva, Uppsala: Uppsala universitet , 2008, p. 210-224Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 2.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. HVV, Mälardalen University.
    A bifocal perspective on the riding school: On Lévinas and equine faces2019In: Equine Cultures in Transition: Ethical Questions / [ed] Jonna Bornemark, Petra Andersson, Ulla Ekström von Essen, London: Routledge, 2019, p. 193-206Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Redmalm’s chapter, “A Bifocal Perspective on the Riding School: On Lévinas and Equine Faces” draws on Emmanuel Lévinas’ ethics to study the ambiguous relationship between horses and leisure riders in riding schools. For Lévinas, ethics begins in the face-to-face relationship. Being bifocal, horses do not “face” humans in an anthropomorphic sense; however, deeply meaningful relationships emerge from the embodied horse-human reciprocity. The encounters at the riding school opens up the possibility of recognizing a Lévinasian “face” in horses in a wide sense of the term, but the prevalent instrumental approach towards horses as learning tools obscures horses’ status as possible ethical others. The riding school thus creates a bifocal view of horses as both partners in embodied emphatic entanglement, and instruments that riders must learn to handle and control. The riding school as such works as an environment where these two opposing versions of the horse are accommodated so that the potential tension between the two perspectives is alleviated. Nevertheless, it is possible to imagine alternative human-horse relationships by focusing on the situations at riding schools where equine faces are allowed to emerge.

  • 3.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    An animal without an animal within: investigating the identities of pet keeping2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    If the human is an animal without an animal within—a creature that has transcended the animal condition—what is a pet? This creature balancing on the border between nature and culture, simultaneously included in and excluded from a human “we”, is the focus of this thesis. The thesis analyzes the discourses and normative frameworks structuring the meaning of pets in people’s lives. By extension, it analyzes how the boundary between “human” and “animal” is produced, negotiated, and challenged in the relationship between pet and owner.

    Each of this thesis’ four constituent studies focuses on an aspect of personal relationships between humans and pets: pets as figures for philosophical thinking, the dual role of pets as commodities and companions, the grief for lost pets, and the power issues at play in the everyday life of pet and owner. Drawing on Michel Foucault’s genealogical approach, crossbred with Donna Haraway’s material-semiotic perspective, the analysis exposes the powers allowing pets to occupy these various positions.

    The thesis demonstrates that pets occupy a special position as boundary creatures in the lives of humans, allowing humans to play with and thus reproduce dichotomies inherent to the contemporary Western worldview, such as human/animal, person/nonperson, subject/object, and friend/commodity. However, pets’ conceptual transgressions may also challenge this worldview. On the one hand, pets are bought and sold as commodities, but on the other, they are widely included in the human sphere as friends or family members. This paradoxical position is accentuated in the construction of a more-than-human home, and it is also visible when pets pass away. This thesis argues that pets, these anomalous creatures, may help humans understand that there are no humans or animals within, only relations between them. Based on this argument, this thesis develops a sociological approach for analyzing the production of humanity and animality in relations between humans and other animals.

  • 4.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    Biopolitik och husdjurssorg2017In: Fronesis, ISSN 1404-2614, no 56-57, p. 147-159Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Akademin för humaniora, utbildning och samhällsvetenskap.
    Christian Abrahamsson, Fredrik Palm, Sverre Wide (red.): Sociologik: tio essäer om socialitet och tänkande2011In: Sociologisk forskning, ISSN 0038-0342, Vol. 48, no 4, p. 75-78Article, book review (Other academic)
  • 6.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    Det binäras magi: om den binära kategoriseringens principer och om husdjuret som det antibinäras tankefigur2009In: Det binäras magi: Om den binära kategoriseringens principer och om husdjuret som det antibinäras tankefigur / [ed] Andreas Nyblom, Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press , 2009, p. 33-37Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Presentationen utforskar binära kategoriseringars logik och möjligheterna till dekonstruktionistiska förhållningssätt till det binära. För att studera detta abstrakta begrepp analyserar jag binariteterna svensk/invandrare, man/kvinna och människa/djur med utgångspunkt i texter av Michael Azar, Judith Butler och Donna Haraway. Genom en jämförelse av dessa tre analyser visar jag att binär kategorisering blir möjlig, trots att de binära begreppen saknar egentligt innehåll, genom ett antal principer – det binäras magi. Utifrån en diskussion om Gadamers syn på satir, baserad på Hegels verkehrt Welt, visar jag avslutningsvis att ett satiriskt soci-alpsykologiskt förhållningssätt genomsyrar Azars, Butlers och Haraways dekonstruktioner av respektive binaritet. Jag framhäver husdjuret som det antibinäras tankefigur och argumenterar för att varje kritik av binära kategoriseringar måste sluta i frågan om vad det mänskliga är.

  • 7.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Discipline and Puppies: Control, Discipline and Biopower in More-than-Human Homes2016Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study draws on interviews with eighteen pet owners to conceptualize how they organize their lives in relation to their pets. I use Foucault’s notion of the bipolar technology of disciplinary power and regulatory biopower in combination with Haraway’s material-semiotics to explore the normative frameworks that structure the relationship between pet and owner and make it meaningful. The analysis shows that the boundaries of the home, the play of power between bodies, and exchanges of love and care are central to producing the pet relationship as inherently meaningful and as an indispensible part of the lives of both pet keepers and pets. While control is present in the owners’ management of the home, the operation of more subtle forms of power can be exposed in the owners’ accounts. A balance between discipline and freedom enables the construction of both human and other identities: pet owners produce their pets’ subjectivity by speaking of them as autonomous persons, while and pets presence in the home also enable their owners’ subjectivity. Pets do not only leave traces in the accounts of their owners, but are co-constituents of their owner’s accounts; in a sense using their owners as linguistic prostheses. I end the article by comparing pet keeping to Foucault’s idea of a lived critique to underline that the power dynamics of pet keeping problematize the often taken-for-granted status of one of sociology’s main objects of study: “the human.”

  • 8.
    Redmalm, david
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    Discipline and puppies: the powers of pet keepingManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This article analyzes eighteen interviews with pet owners to conceptualize how they organize their lives in relation to their pets. I use Foucault’s concepts of the bipolar technology of disciplinary power and regulatory biopower in combination with Haraway’s material-semiotics to explore the normative frameworks that structure the relationship between pet and owner and make it meaningful. The analysis shows that the boundaries of the home, the play of power between bodies, and exchanges of love and care are central to producing the pet relationship as inherently meaningful and as an indispensible part of the lives of both pet keepers and pets. While pet owners produce their pets’ subjectivity by speaking of them as autonomous persons, pets also enable their owners’ subjectivity. I end the article by comparing pet keeping to Foucault’s notion of a lived critique to underline that the power dynamics of pet keeping problematize the often taken-for-granted status of one of sociology’s main objects of study: “the human".

  • 9.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    Djur i bur även i hyllade djurparker2012In: Djurens Rätt, ISSN 0345-2409, no 1, p. 36-37Article in journal (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
  • 10.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    Ett svar som kräver en fråga: om Johan Asplunds socialpsykologi2011In: Det socialpsykologiska perspektivet / [ed] Jonas Lindblom,Jonas Stier, Lund: Studentlitteratur , 2011Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Den sociologiska socialpsykologin har vuxit fram som en reaktion på psykologisk socialpsykologi men också på traditionell, strukturorienterad, sociologi. I denna bok presenteras för första gången på svenska en extensiv och samlad redogörelse för den sociologiska socialpsykologins portalfigurer - deras biografier, idévärldar och begreppsbildningar. Efter att ha positionerat den sociologiska socialpsykologin behandlas i tur och ordning George Herbert Mead, Johan Asplund, Erich Fromm, Erik Homburger Erikson, Erving Goffman, Harold Garfinkel, Jean-Paul Sartre, Jonathan Potter och Judith Butler. Därefter summeras de enskilda bidragen med avsikten att fördjupa förståelsen av ett socialpsykologiskt perspektiv på människan.

  • 11.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Forskaren i gränslandet mellan nyhets- och nöjesmedia2016In: Samproduktionens retorik och praktik: - inom området hälsa och välfärd / [ed] Inger K Holmström, Jonas Stier, Per Tillgren och Gunnel Östlund, Lund: Studentlitteratur AB, 2016, 1, p. 209-220Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    I det här kapitlet kommer läsaren få ta del av ett forskningsresultats väg ut i etern och lära känna forskaren som gränsvarelse i spänningsfältet mellan nyhets- och nöjesmedia. När en forskare vill sprida ett forskningsresultat i massmedia sätter en samproduktionsprocess igång där slutprodukten, alltså nyhetsartikeln, förhandlas fram mellan forskare och journalist, och där de båda parterna värderar produkten på olika sätt. Ett forskningsresultat må vara en nyhet för forskaren, men det är inte alltid ett forskningsresultat har ett nyhetsvärde i journalistens ögon. Forskaren vill se sitt resultat spritt till en bredare publik med så lite förvanskning som möjligt. Journalisten fokuserar på läsbarhet och attraktionskraft. Det innebär att det journalistiska arbetet delvis handlar om nyhetens paketering, vilket i sin tur kan leda till att forskaren plötsligt befinner sig i en situation som hen inte har förutsett – till exempel med en chihuahua i famnen. 

  • 12.
    Redmalm, David
    Mälardalens högskola, Hälsa och välfärd.
    Holy bonsai wolves: chihuahuas and the Paris Hilton syndrome2014In: International journal of cultural studies, ISSN 1367-8779, E-ISSN 1460-356X, Vol. 17, no 1, p. 93-109Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

     This article examines the reasons for the Chihuahua breed’s popularity in contemporary westernsociety by looking at two sets of data: Chihuahua handbooks and The Simple Life show, starringParis Hilton and her Chihuahua Tinkerbell. The article argues that the Chihuahua is a holy anomaly:a creature which can be used in myths and rituals to temporarily alleviate the tension-filled binaryoppositions and stereotypes inherent in a particular culture, in order to celebrate and reinforcethat culture’s categories and social order. The Chihuahua – or the bonsai wolf – transcendstwo binary oppositions fundamental to contemporary westerners: subject/object and nature/culture. Although the Chihuahua challenges a number of related binary oppositions, it is generallydismissed as a matter for humor, low-brow entertainment or expressions of sentimentality,rendering ritual encounters with Chihuahuas harmless. The article concludes by asking: whatwould happen if humans actually started listening to what the Chihuahua is telling them?

  • 13.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Akademin för humaniora, utbildning och samhällsvetenskap.
    Husdjurets genealogi2009Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Hur kan man undersöka relationen mellan människa och djur? Detta är huvudfrågan för presentationen. I relationen mellan människa och djur utmanas dikotomierna kultur/natur, språklig/stum, och samhälls/naturvetenskap, och författaren vill därför, i enighet med samtida forskningsresultat på animal studies-fältet, plädera för en sociologisk problematisering av icke-mänskliga djur. I centrum för diskussionen står språket som genom historien ofta fungerat som en filosofisk vattendelare mellan människa och djur – människor har språk i en särskild bemärkelse, medan djur är utan. Samtidigt tar icke-mänskliga djur plats i ett språkligt samhälle och formar tillsammans med människor detta samhälle. Därför ställer icke-mänskliga djur både poststrukturalistiska och klassiska sociologiska frågor på sin spets. Författaren argumenterar för en dekonstruktionistisk sociologisk studie av husdjursfenomenet som en utmaning av sociologins antropocentrism och en utveckling av det poststrukturalistsiska språkbegreppet. Denna studie är ett planerat fyraårigt avhandlingsprojekt.

  • 14.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    In-your-face-ethics: phenomenology of the face and social psychological animal studies2011In: Undisciplined animals: invitations to animal studies / [ed] Pär Segerdahl, Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing , 2011, 1, p. 73-104Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this essay, I show how nonhuman animals can challenge anthropocentric theoretical reflection by their mere gaze. According to the central social psychological thought figure, humans become the individual beings they are in the eyes of others. What happens when those others are nonhuman animals? Instead I show that many social philosophers focusing on the encounter face-to-face have a peculiar fascination for nonhuman animals; it is as if nonhuman animals quietly call attention to themselves as soon as philosophers begin their meditations. In the essay, I especially focus on Emmanuel Lévinas phenomenology of the face. For Lévninas, the meeting face to face is prior to all other forms of sociality. When another being respond to your existence, you become someone in the very invitation to speak. The invitation to speak entails a responsibility to respond and confirm the existence of the other, and therefore, ethics is intimately intertwined with the process of perceiving a notion of self and the meeting face-to-face. While Lévinas argues that we never can decide in advance who has a face and who has not, and that human beings may be bereaved of their faces, Lévinas is not ready to grant a face to a nonhuman animal. This has raised a discussion whether Lévinas is indeed consistent with his own thinking. I show that Lévinas position in relation to nonhuman animals does not follow from his discussion of the phenomenology of the face, but from the things he associate with the word ‘animal’, and from how he uses it to define the human subject.  I suggest that studies of social life cannot define in advance what an ‘other’ is, since the moment where we discover a new face and challenge our notion of ourselves is an integral part of social existence. Since an important aspect of Lévinas face is that it is always prior to the I, then we can never dismiss a possible face in advance. This becomes crucial in relation to nonhuman animals, since they regularly are bereaved of their faces with reference to their animality, even though many people interact face-to-face with nonhuman animals. Consequently, in order not to risk neglecting meaningful interaction, social scientists need an open stance toward possible faces, and they should start by letting nonhuman animals into social science studies in general, and social psychological studies in particular.

  • 15.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. HVV, Mälardalen University.
    Liminanimals: Chihuahuas, Bo the dog and the Scaly Ant-Eater2019Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this lecture sociologist David Redmalm will talk about pets and their liminal status in human society. He will show how thinking with pets can challenge ingrained stereotypical ideas about the distinction between nature and culture, and how this distinction shapes human and nonhuman lives. To show how pets can enable a more nuanced understanding of what we think of as nature and culture, David Redmalm will draw on a number of examples from his own research: Chihuahuas and their symbolic and material role in Western society, the media narrative of Obama family’s dog Bo Obama, pet cultural expressions of grief for lost pets, and the curious habits of the scaly anteater.

     

  • 16.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Akademin för humaniora, utbildning och samhällsvetenskap.
    Meet a can of meat: on Lévinasian ethics and non-human faces2009Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper, I show how nonhuman animals can challenge anthropocentric theoretical reflection only by their gaze. According to the central social psychological thought figure, humans become the individual beings they are in the eyes of others. What happens when those others are nonhuman animals? Instead I show that many social philosophers focusing on the encounter face-to-face have a peculiar fascination for nonhuman animals; it is as if nonhuman animals quietly call attention to themselves as soon as philosophers begin their meditations. In the paper, I especially focus on Emmanuel Lévinas phenomenology of the face. For Lévninas, the meeting face to face is prior to all other forms of sociality. When another being respond to your existence, you become someone in the very invitation to speak. The invitation to speak entails a responsibility to respond and confirm the existence of the other, and therefore, ethics is intimately intertwined with the process of perceiving a notion of self and the meeting face-to-face. While Lévinas argues that we never can decide in advance who has a face and who has not, and that human beings may be bereaved of their faces, Lévinas is not ready to grant a face to a nonhuman animal. This has raised a discussion whether Lévinas is indeed consistent with his own thinking. I show that Lévinas position in relation to nonhuman animals does not follow from his discussion of the phenomenology of the face, but from the things he associate with the word ‘animal’, and from how he uses it to define the human subject.  I suggest that studies of social life cannot define in advance what an ‘other’ is, since the moment where we discover a new face and challenge our notion of ourselves is an integral part of social existence. Since an important aspect of Lévinas face is that it is always prior to the I, then we can never dismiss a possible face in advance. This becomes crucial in relation to nonhuman animals, since they regularly are bereaved of their faces with reference to their animality, even though many people interact face-to-face with nonhuman animals. Consequently, in order not to risk neglecting meaningful interaction, social scientists need an open stance toward possible faces, and they should start by letting nonhuman animals into social science studies in general, and social psychological studies in particular.

  • 17.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Outdoor cats and indoor rats: Three proposed post doc projects on the theme of liminality2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    During my presentation I will map out my planned post doc projects which means that I will attempt to navigate between urban birds, bird feeders, pest controllers, Judith Butler,de-domesticated rabbits, wildlife managers, bear cubs, sewer rats, Michel Foucault, condolence cards for bereaved pet owners, graffiti painters, Giorgio Agamben, dumpster divers and neutered outdoor cats.

  • 18.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    Pet grief: when is nonhuman life grievable?Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This study explores how pet owners grieve their pets and view their pets’ transience. Drawing on Butler’s notion of the differential allocation of grievability, I have analyzed eighteen interviews with pet owners. Butler argues that grievability is made possible by a normative framework which allows for some human or human-like lives to be grieved, while other lives are rendered ‘lose-able’. All the interviewed pet owners say that they are capable of grieving a nonhuman animal, but analysis suggests that they make their pets grievable and ungrievable by turns. I argue that by maintaining this ambivalence, the interviewees negotiate pets’ inclusion in a human society while simultaneously defending human exceptionalism. The article concludes with a discussion of pet grief as a potentially destabilizing emotion. I suggest that grieving beings on the border between grievable human and lose-able animal—‘werewolves’ according to Giorgio Agamben—may be a powerful way of challenging normative frameworks which arbitrarily render some human and nonhuman lives lose-able.

  • 19.
    Redmalm, David
    Mälardalens högskola, Hälsa och välfärd.
    Pet grief: When is non-human life grievable?2015In: Sociological Review, ISSN 0038-0261, E-ISSN 1467-954X, Vol. 63, no 1, p. 19-35Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study explores how pet owners grieve their pets and view their pets' transience. Drawing on Butler's notion of the differential allocation of grievability, I have analysed interviews with eighteen pet owners. Butler argues that grievability is made possible by a normative framework which allows for some human or human-like lives to be grieved, while other lives are rendered 'lose-able'. All the interviewed pet owners say that they are capable of grieving a non-human animal, but analysis suggests that they make their pets grievable and ungrievable by turns. I argue that by maintaining this ambivalence, the interviewees negotiate pets' inclusion in a human moral community while simultaneously defending human exceptionalism. The article concludes with a discussion of pet grief as a potentially destabilizing emotion. I suggest that grieving beings on the border between grievable human and lose-able animal - 'werewolves' according to Giorgio Agamben - may be a powerful way of challenging normative frameworks which arbitrarily render some human and non-human lives lose-able.

  • 20.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Posthuman Postmortem Postcards: Othering and Identification in Condolence Cards for Bereaved Pet Keepers2016Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Drawing on the work of Giorgio Agamben, this paper analyzes the text and imagery of condolence cards for humans who have lost a nonhuman animal companion. Although previous research has suggested that there is a taboo on grieving lost pets, there is a growing global market for cards designed for people who mourn a companion animal. The grammar and aesthetics of these cards show what is possible and acceptable when it comes to the display of grief across species borders, and what is not. Most of the cards available recognize the loss of a pet as the loss of a person rather than a belonging, or the loss of grievable bios (political life) rather than expendable zoē (bare life). The analysis shows that while the cards recognize the privileged status of some nonhuman animals in the life of humans, they are concurrently dependent on using the kind of familiar anthropocentric language and imagery that also fuel human exceptionalism. On the one hand, the cards’ rhetoric thus opens up for representations of the loss of companion animals which risk belittling or rejecting the grief for a lost companion animal. On the other, some cards also challenge the hierarchical human/animal distinction, emphasizing non-human animals’ status as kin, in spite of the difference in kind. This balancing between othering and trans-species identification provides the cards with a posthuman quality: in accumulation the cards shed light not only on the othering operations categorizing nonhuman animals as bare life, but also on the volatile notion of a human ‘we’. These posthuman postmortem postcards thus challenge what Agamben calls the anthropological machine; that is, they unsettle discursive othering mechanisms producing the distinction between bios and zoē, and the idea of humans as exceptional animals.

  • 21. Redmalm, David
    Review of Humans, Animals and Biopolitics: The More-than-Human Condition, Edited by Kristin Asdal, Tone Druglitrö and Steve Hinchliffe2017In: Nordic Journal of Science and Technology Studies, ISSN 1894-4647, Vol. 5, no 1, p. 38-39Article, book review (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Michel Foucault’s concept of biopolitics captures the way a decentralized form of governing measures and mobilizes life itself through a number of technologies, such as demographics, surveillance and health initiatives, with the aim to prolong and enhance the lives of a population. According to Foucault, this biopolitical form of governing characteristic of modernity implies a detached and technical stance towards individual lives. In short, biopolitics turns individual lives into life as a mass noun. Interestingly, when human life is treated as a resource, human’s self-proclaimed position as the crown of creation is unsettled and humans find themselves part of the same biopolitical nexus as many other animals. The technologies and consequences of the biopolitization of humans and other animals is the subject of the volume Humans, Animals and Biopolitics, edited by Kristin Asdal, Tone Druglitrö and Steve Hinchliffe. It is a book that should be required reading for Foucauldian theorists and human-animal studies scholars alike.

  • 22. Redmalm, David
    Sharing the condition of abandonment: The beastly topology of condolence cards for bereaved pet owners2017In: Animal Places: Lively Cartographies of Human-Animal Relations / [ed] Jacob Bull, Tora Holmberg and Cecilia Åsberg, London and New York: Routledge, 2017, 1, p. 89-114Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This chapter focuses on spatiality in representations of the loss of and grief for companion animals. Giorgio Agamben’s theorization of the distinction between political and bare life is used to analyse around 350 condolence cards for bereaved pet owners. It is shown that the visual emplacement of pets in different contexts in the collection of cards underlines that pets are worth grieving, while at the same time a distance is maintained between humans and other animals. In spite of this distancing, it is argued that the cards have the potential to challenge the normative boundary between grievable and ungrievable life. 

  • 23.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. HVV, Mälardalen University.
    ‘So sorry for the loss of your little friend’: A study of condolence cards for bereaved pet keepers2015Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    There is a place where the rainbow always shines, where kittens and puppies fly around with angel wings, and where pet rats feast on endless quantities of cheese: it is the world depicted on condolence cards for bereaved pet keepers. What do these cards tell us about humans’ view of other animals—and of themselves? Drawing on Judith Butler’s writing on grief and bereavement, this paper analyzes condolence cards for humans who have lost a non-human companion. Butler argues that grief has specific characteristics and that norms restrict the allocation of grief by impeding the ascription of one or more of these characteristics. This normative framework thus allows for some human or human-like lives to be grieved, while other lives are rendered ‘lose-able’. To send a condolence card is thus not only to recognize someone’s pain, but to recognize this pain in a specific way, contributing to such a shared normative framework, and to a differential allocation of grievability. In consequence, pet condolence cards show what is possible and acceptable when it comes to the display of grief across species borders, and what is not.

    While many themes in condolence cards for companion animals resemble ‘human’ condolence cards, these cards also challenge non-human animals’ status as grievable: companion animals are recurrently represented as replaceable, the loss is sometimes framed as predictable or in other ways manageable, and the many objectifying depictions of non-human bodies in the cards suggest a lack of embodied empathy with non-human animals.  One the one hand, the cards’ double-sided rhetoric opens up for problematic representations of the loss of companion animals which risk belittling or rejecting the grief for a lost companion animal. On the other, some cards also challenge the hierarchical human/animal distinction, emphasizing non-human animals’ status as kin, in spite of the difference in kind. Thus, the fantasy place constructed by the cards’ imagery corresponds to a utopian space, however tension-filled and indefinitely articulated, in which the differential allocation of grievability is disrupted and ‘the human’ and ‘the animal’ is re-imagined. This is a space of heedless sentimentality and anthropocentric fantasies, but also a space where two taboos are challenged: the taboos around death and around the grief for lost pets.

    The paper concludes by suggesting that condolence cards for bereaved pet owners tend to give non-human animals the status of ‘werewolves’, using Giorgio Agamben’s term for beings existing in the liminal space between grievable and lose-able. Because the cards represent companion animals as being simultaneously grievable and ungrievable—as human and non-human—they accentuate the werewolf status of these beings and the problematic distinction between human and animal. The cards that succeed in recognizing the grief for a ‘werewolf’, the paper argues, pose a serious challenge to the differential allocation of grievability and the anthropocentric politics of kin and kind.

  • 24.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    "So Sorry for the Loss of Your Little Friend": Pets’ Grievability in Condolence Cards for Humans Mourning Animals2016In: Mourning Animals: Rituals and Practices Surrounding Animal Death / [ed] Margo DeMello, East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 2016, 1, p. 101-108Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    To send a condolence card is not only to recognize someone’s pain, but to recognize this pain in a specific way, contributing to a shared social understanding what the loss in question might mean to the bereaved person and the people around him or her. While many themes in condolence cards for companion animals resemble ‘human’ condolence cards, these cards also challenge non-human animals’ status as grievable: companion animals are recurrently represented as replaceable to some extent, the loss is sometimes framed as predictable or in other ways manageable, and the many objectifying depictions of non-human bodies in the cards suggest a lack of embodied empathy with non-human animals. Redmalm thus argues that this risks belittling or rejecting the grief for a lost companion animal. On the other, this genre of condolence cards also makes possible ways to represent loss and death in quite explicit ways, challenging the Western taboo around death. Some cards also challenge the hierarchical human/animal distinction, emphasizing non-human animals’ status as kin, in spite of the difference in kind. The chapter concludes by suggesting that condolence cards for bereaved pet owners tend to give non-human animals the status of ‘werewolves’, using Giorgio Agamben’s term for beings existing in the liminal space between grievable and lose-able. Because the cards represent companion animals as being simultaneously grievable and ungrievable—as human and non-human—they accentuate the werewolf status of these beings and the problematic distinction between human and animal. The cards that succeed in recognizing the grief for a ‘werewolf’, the chapter argues, pose a serious challenge to the differential allocation of grievability and the anthropocentric politics of kin and kind.

  • 25.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.
    The construction of a celebrity and her pet: a case study of Paris Hilton and Tinkerbell2010Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Paris Hilton, heiress of the Hilton hotel chain fortune, is well-known from several reality-TV shows, a music career, and frequent appearances in tabloids all over the world. Often by her side, the Chihuahua Tinkerbell has become one of the world’s most famous now living pets, and she is the author of her biography, written in first person singular. The relation between Hilton and Tinkerbell seems almost archetypical – it appears to be the perfect incarnation of the bourgeois pet-owner, moving her dog around in an expensive handbag as an accessory without any regard to the real pet behind the Gucci collar. Nevertheless, there is a peculiar focus on Tinkerbell in different forms of celebrity media; people seem to be especially moved by this dog and her destiny.In a discourse analysis of books, tabloid articles, reality show episodes, interviews and images from celebrity magazines, it is shown that imagery and text cooperate to produce Tinkerbell as a person. This is done through a number of different discursive techniques and among them is the linguistic prosthesis. This concept refers to the way people speak for animals, i.e. ascribe them a voice in first person singular, and it is often done in order to make sense of the animal’s behavior. By giving an animal a voice, the animal is made intoan active, social subject, but in the case of Tinkerbell, the voice of the produced canine subject is often heavily normative. It is used to criticize her mistress’ sometimes unreliable behavior, to question the mistreatment of pets, and to express a general critique against life in the lap of luxury. In the interplay between text and pet a certain form of common sense is produced and disseminated.The discussion is divided in two sections. First, it is argued that popular media’s fixation with Tinkerbell stems from the way the pet as a social phenomenon trifle with common dichotomies such as nature/culture, authenticity/simulation, wilderness/civilization, speech/speechlessness, child/adult and poor/rich. Second, the relation between representations of animals in media, such as wildlife films and TV-shows on dog-training and veterinary clinics, is discussed in relation to the epistemology of the reality show genre.

  • 26.
    Redmalm, David
    School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Mälardalen University.
    The horse, in his present condition of slavery: Alienation and Self-Realization in the Riding School2018Conference paper (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.

  • 27.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    The Topsy-Turvy Centaur: The Production of Human Bodies and Equine Minds in Riding Schools2016Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This presentation is based on preliminary findings from an ethnographic study of adult pupils at riding schools. The study is part of the research project Intimate Sociality: Practice and Identity in Collective Housing, Human-Animal Relations and Couple Dancing, based at The Institute for Future Studies (project leader: Maria Törnqvist). The study explores the kind of intimacy that pupils strive for and often find at riding schools in relation to human and equine animals. Intimate sociality at riding schools is brief and momentary: during and in connection to riding classes the participants share experiences of a wide range of events and emotions, but the discussions and social relations at the schools are generally left behind when the pupils return home. Nevertheless, riding school interactions between humans and horses have a deeper resonance in the lives of the pupils. As part of their education, the pupils learn to control their bodies. This control means that the pupils start to pay attention to their own physical being, rather than their thoughts, in contrast to the usual emphasis on the cerebral in their everyday lives. In this way, the riders let their bodies take control of their minds, rather than the other way around. Further, to attune their bodies to the horses they ride, it becomes crucial to ascribe a mind and personhood to the horses. This turns the widespread idea of the horse and rider as a centaur with a horse’s body and a human mind literally upside down. In the empirical material—both during observations and in interviews—the rider is emphasized as body, while the horse is emphasized as a minded being. I discuss this peculiar creature—the topsy-turvy centaur—in relation to Michel Foucualt’s conceptualization of power and Charlotte Perkin Gilman’s use of the figure of the horse in her theorization of inequality, and suggest that this figure challenges not only ideals related to contemporary capitalist society, but also ideals associated with being human. However, while leisure riding opens up for certain subversive possibilities for the riding human, it is not necessarily the same for the horses involved. This is also recognized by the pupils in the study: they continuously orient to the inequality between humans and horses in the way they talk about themselves, other humans, and the horses they ride.

  • 28.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    To make pets live, and to let them die: The biopolitics of pet keeping2019In: Death Matters: Cultural Sociology of Mortal Life / [ed] Tora Holmberg, Annika Jonsson, Fredrik Palm, London: Palgrave Macmillan , 2019, 1, p. 241-263Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Pets are often considered to be friends or part of the nuclear family, and many pets are grieved when they die. But pets are also routinely bred in abundance, bought, sold, and euthanized when they are unwanted. The aim of this chapter is to suggest a way of understanding pet keeping in the light of pets’ paradoxical status between “grievable” and “killable.” It argues that the ambiguous conceptualization of the pet as an irreplaceable individual and as a consumable resource corresponds to a biopolitical rationale for breeding, buying, selling and killing pets. The chapter suggests that pet keeping can be regarded as a demarcated zone where biopolitical norms surrounding life and death can be played with, managed and reproduced.

  • 29.
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro universitet, Akademin för humaniora, utbildning och samhällsvetenskap.
    When species meet2009In: Sociologisk forskning, ISSN 0038-0342, no 4, p. 71-73Article, book review (Other academic)
  • 30.
    Redmalm, David
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Holmberg, Tora
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for Housing and Urban Research.
    Stable Genius?: The making of “good riders” and “good horses” at the riding school2018Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    How do riders valuate human and equine psyches and bodies?  The paper builds on a study in which riding groups are followed before, during and after riding lessons. The analysis shows that early career riders view horses partly as passive tools and partly as threatening adversaries. After a while, riding school pupils come to see horses’ vulnerable position—more experienced riders explain that they try to understand the horses’ perspective of the riding school, which includes long days, difficult pupils and sometimes violent treatment. While riders increasingly come to think of horses as persons, they begin thinking of themselves as human animals—as corporeal rather than cerebral beings. The riding school is thus a place where humans are becoming horse, and the horses emerge as human-like creatures. But while most riders contrast the liberating environment of the riding school to the alienating conditions of the work-week, some also recognize that the riding school requires that the horses are alienated from their own equine selves. Ultimately, “good horses” are the ones seen as willing to accept these conditions. “Good riders” learn to benefit from those same conditions.

  • 31.
    Redmalm, David
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Schuurman, Nora
    Karelian Institute, University of Eastern Finland..
    Scandinavian pet cemeteries as shared spaces of companion animal death2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Pets are animals included in the cultural realm, they are often considered family members and, to some extent, the rituals surrounding their death resemble those of human death. Yet, pet owners also conceive of their pets as animals who are guided by their instincts and belong to the realm of nature. Special cemeteries for pets, for instance, have been established in many Western countries since the 19th century. Pet cemeteries are often located in natural environments in rural or peri-urban areas, with a suggested association between animals and nature. These spaces present a specific culture of petkeeping, where remembrance and different material and visual expressions of grief for the death of a companion animal are allowed, encouraged and shared.

    In this presentation, we explore the ways in which companion animal death is performed in pet cemeteries in Scandinavia. Drawing from photographic data collected at selected pet cemeteries in Finland and Sweden, supported by interviews with key informants and information published by cemetery organizations on websites and in newsletters, we explore the material practices and shared spaces of mourning and remembrance. In Scandinavia, the popularity of second homes is high, which means that many owners choose to bury their animal companion on private land. Cremation services for pets are also widely used by owners. In this context, pet cemeteries can be understood as spaces where the mourning is shared between pet owners. The grave of a pet is individually marked and has an identity that makes it both similar to and different from other graves. 

    In our study, we investigate different practices and rituals related to animal death at pet cemeteries. We focus on the use of items such as headstones, statues, and pictures, with attached verses and other verbal remembrance at the grave. We also pay attention to rules and norms prevalent at the cemeteries, as well as to the role of religion and related use of the cross and figures such as angels. We suggest that in these spaces pets are simultaneously grieved as human-like friends and family members, and as nonhuman others. Pet cemeteries thus mirror humans’ ambivalent status to nonhuman animals and to the idea of nature.

  • 32.
    Redmalm, David
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Skoglund, Annika
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management. University of Exeter Business School.
    Bringing one’s self to work and back again: The role of surprises in alternative entrepreneurship2018In: European Group of Organization Studies, 2018Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    With the increasing realization that boundaries are constructed in relation to certain “differences” that make up an organizational “inside” in relation to its “outside”, organizational scholars have intensified their studies of how identities are hosted and managed within organizations. Less known, however, is the wish of organizations to disrupt and destabilize their members’ subjectification to the organization by inviting them to with personally challenging experiences and curated surprises. To explore this type of intentional disruptions, we study a technology company that engages in a number of social issues only loosely connected to their main product, a digital presentation tool. We especially focus on one intervention: a yearly project in which the company’s employees renovate buildings in a community where most are Roma with low socio-economic status. 

  • 33.
    Redmalm, David
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Skoglund, Annika
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Taking one’s self to work and back again: Alternative Entrepreneurship and Social interventions2018Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Scholars have increasingly paid interest to the way companies build a brand and an office culture by encouraging employees to talk about and cultivate their creative interests and personal values within the frames of their occupation. By bringing one’s self to work the employee contributes to a creative work environment that attracts potential candidates, and that benefits economic gain. This paper focuses on how the IT-company Prezi, founded in Hungary in 2009, creates outlets for the personal dimensions that employees bring to work. Prezi attracts employees sharing liberal and cosmopolitan views who contribute to building a brand and an office culture outside-in, in sharp contrast with the surrounding society characterized by a wave of right-wing populism and nationalist sentiments in Hungary. As a consequence, employees talk of their workplace as a protected “bubble.”

  • 34.
    Redmalm, David
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Skoglund, Annika
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Berglund, Karin
    Företagsekonomiska institutionen, Stockholms universitet.
    Möbius Management: The Internal Dynamics of Business Ethics Programmes2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The present study draws on the theoretical framework of Giorgio Agamben to conceptualize the dynamic that business ethics programmes create within companies—an area of study that is underexplored in organization and management research. We suggest that the “ethical” corporation can be regarded as a machine that dissolves the boundaries of the firm and conflates the goals and values of management, employees and the corporation—a process we call Möbius Management. Using ethnographic methods, we have studied the American-Hungarian IT company Prezi’s engagement in the Budapest Pride Parade, in a Roma settlement, and in a mission to help Syrian refugees. These different situations can be regarded as what Agamben calls “zones of indistinction”: places where seemingly contradictory values and categories are merged, and where the value of life is momentarily challenged. Entering these zones, employees’ personal engagement is encouraged and developed, which in turn strengthens bonds between employees and sustains an atmosphere of openness at the office. To make the interventions into company events that are also individually rewarding, management and employees downplay the political specificity of the situations in favor of emotional aspects and general references to humanist universalism. In this way, corporations with social visions can themselves also be regarded as “zones of indistinction” where idealism and economic gain, as well as individual and employee identities, are merged. In conclusion, the contrast between Prezi and the present political situation in Hungary, characterized by a rhetoric of inside and outside, accentuates the process and effect of Möbius management.

  • 35.
    Redmalm, David
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Skoglund, Annika
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Berglund, Karin
    Företagsekonomiska institutionen, Stockholms universitet.
    ”Yeah! We’re Open”: Transdimensional Openness in Alternative Entrepreneurship2015Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The present ethnographic study explores the dynamics of “inside” and “outside” in diversity management and CSR. In focus is the Hungarian IT-company Prezi that engages in social issues such as gender equality, LGBT rights and anti-racism. Openness is Prezi’s watchword; by referring to themselves as open, the company aims to attract employees and foster a creative work process. Yet, to establish this openness, new insides and outsides need to be created. The study uses the work of Giorgio Agamben to trace the production of openness in various dimensions of the enterprise: boundaries between work and spare time, categorical divisions, organizational borders, and walls and other barriers in the office landscape. It is argued that while Prezi’s constellation of various types of openness is an efficient tool for social impact, the company’s production of transdimensional openness risks depoliticizing urgent social issues.

  • 36.
    Schuurman, Nora
    et al.
    Karelian Institute, University of Eastern Finland.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    My Friend Who Never Let Me Down: Ambiguous Emotions at Pet Cemeteries2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Pets are liminal creatures: they are regarded as friends and family while they are, at the same time, considered to be belongings. Violence against pets is highly socially stigmatizing in most contexts, but at the same time, owners of companion animals may chose to end their pets’ lives without facing legal charges. There is a general idea, present both in research and popular culture, of a widespread norm against strong emotional responses to the passing of a pet. The reason would be that pets are not considered fully human, and grieving pets in a way similar to human mourning would challenge the boundary between humans and other animals. Yet, there are numerous products and services specifically designed for bereaved pet owners: condolence cards, bereavement counseling, popular psychology books—and pet cemeteries. Through an ethnographic study of pet cemeteries in Sweden, Finland and Norway, we show how pets’ ambiguous status is conveyed through tombstones, decorations and the practices of cemetery visits. Relying on photographs, field notes, interviews with key informants, and the studied pet cemetery organizations’ documentation, we explore the material and meaning-making practices that make these places possible. We suggest that these spaces enable a double sense of pets’ life: pets are simultaneously grieved as human-like friends and family members through anthropocentric gestures, and as nonhuman others through innovative and norm-challenging ways of grieving. Drawing on Judith Butler’s writing on grief, and Giorgio Agambens’ conceptualization of “the animal,” we discuss how practices at pet cemeteries convey abstract and sometimes ambiguous understandings of what life is.

  • 37.
    Schuurman, Nora
    et al.
    Univ Turku, Sch Hist Culture & Arts Studies, Turku 20014, Finland.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Transgressing boundaries of grievability: Ambiguous emotions at pet cemeteries2019In: Emotion, Space and Society, ISSN 1755-4586, E-ISSN 1878-0040, Vol. 31, p. 32-40Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 38.
    Skoglund, Annika
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Berglund, Karin
    Stockholm Business School.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Prezi’s cultivation of openness – A videography of ‘alternative entrepreneurship’2015Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 39.
    Skoglund, Annika
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    'Doggy-biopolitics’: Governing via the First Dog2017In: Organization, ISSN 1350-5084, E-ISSN 1461-7323, Vol. 24, no 2, p. 240-266Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Biopolitics, traditionally understood as management of the human population, has been extended to include nonhuman animal life and posthuman life. In this article, we turn to literatures that advance Foucauldian biopolitics to explore the mode of government enabled by the dog of the US presidential family – the First Dog called Bo Obama. With analytical focus on vitalisation efforts, we follow the construction of Bo in various outlets, such as the websites of the White House and an animal rights organisation. Bo’s microphysical escapades and the negotiation thereof show how contemporary biopolitics, which targets the vitality of the dog population, is linked to seductive neoliberal management techniques and subjectivities. We discuss ‘cuddly management’ in relation to Foucauldian scholarship within organisation and management studies and propose that the construction of Bo facilitates interspecies family norms and an empathic embrace of difference circumscribed by vitalisation efforts that we pinpoint as ‘doggy-biopolics'.

  • 40.
    Skoglund, Annika
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management.
    Redmalm, David
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences, Industrial Engineering & Management. Sociolologiska institutionen, Uppsala universitet.
    ‘Doggy-Biopolitics’: Governing via the First Dog2016Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Biopolitics, traditionally understood as management of the human population, has been extended to include nonhuman animal life and posthuman life. In this article we turn to these advancements of Foucauldian biopolitics to explore the mode of government enabled by the dog of the US presidential family—the First Dog called Bo Obama. We follow the construction of Bo in various outlets from well-known and less famous sources, as the websites of the White House and an animal rights organisation. Bo’s microphysical escapades in and around the White House show how posthuman biopolitics, which targets the vitality of the dog population, is linked to seductive neoliberal management techniques and subjectivities that enhance ‘cuddly management.’ Bo also facilitates a proliferation of interspecies family norms and an empathic embrace of difference. We thus suggest that Bo makes possible a mode of government nurtured by vitality, playfulness and posthuman norms, what we call ‘doggy-biopolitics.’

  • 41.
    Skoglund, Annika
    et al.
    KTH, Industriell ekonomi och organisation (Inst.).
    Redmalm, David
    Örebro.
    The Biopolitics of Bo and Barack2011In: The Radical Foucault Conference / [ed] Gilbert, Jeremy;Shaw, Debra, 2011Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The optimization of the population as vital has been remolded with recent expressions of multispecies living, a rejuvenation of Environmentalism, the inception of ecology into politics and conceptualizations of post-human society. In this paper we address this re-establishment of government by analyzing the portraits of, and everyday discussions on and with, the First dog Bo Obama. The question we pose is how the First dog is constituted as a true family accessory, well behaved and in extension, an authority who can call upon the presidential subject and the ideal caring citizen? This also requires that the presidential family and staff occasionally walk in the other end of a leash, cuddle with and are companions to, the dog. Equally is the dog shaped to behave in a certain manner coupled with a specific mode of speech, representative of our time. By analyzing the imagery around, and peripheral statements on Bo and his relation to Barack Obama, the First family, the White House and in particular, interactive people, such as animal rights activists, we scrutinize the capillary workings of power. By intertwining Animal Studies with Governmentality theory we illustrate that the discourse around Bo produces him as a neo-liberal social being, offered to speak his own opinion in front of journalists’ microphones and TV cameras, obliged to express taste and distaste, seduced to exercise and keep his body fit, all furthered at internet forums by human animals pretending to be dogs. The imagery around Bo produces a specific reality of not only a legitimate presidential family life filled with standardized leisure time, but also of new possibilities for how to govern the population. As people voluntarily engage in seeing through the eyes of the dog, evaluating their president in relation to the dog, and speaking on behalf of the dog, new power relations arise that utilize this engagement. This exemplifies how a governmental rationality evolves, by how it increasingly takes the life of the non-human animal as its objective whilst people are rendered governable, rationalized to be calculated upon, to be optimized at an aggregate level.

  • 42.
    Törnqvist, Maria
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education. Institutet för framtidsstudier.
    Holmberg, Tora
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute for Housing and Urban Research. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Centre for Gender Research. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Palm, Fredrik
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Stunder av total sammansmältning: Essä i programboken för teaterföreställningen Ocean2018Other (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
    Abstract [sv]

    Essä i programboken för teaterföreställningen Ocean. Pjäsen handlar om olika former av intimitet och utgår från forskningsprojektet "Intimitetens sociala former: Närhetspraktik och identitet i kollektivt boende, husdjursrelationer och pardans". Projektet, som finansieras av Vetenskapsrådet, undersöker kollektivboenden, relationen mellan människor och djur, ridskolor, stödgrupper för sexmissbrukare och dansentusiaster. Pjäsen inkluderar även ett särskilt fokus på relationer över nätet. Pjäsen är skriven och regisserad av Paula Stenström Öhman. Pjäsen kunde förverkligas bland annat tack vare ett anslag från Riksbankens jubileumsfond, genom projektet Sociologi för scen.

1 - 42 of 42
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