The Animal Studies Workshop’s first year as an official entity coincides with the Chicago Humanities Festival’s annual event, themed this year around the title “Animal: What Makes us Human.”
On November 3, Mark Payne will present “The Iambic Animal.” Tracing the poetic imagination from Aristophanes and Ovid to Ezra Pound and William Carlos Williams, Payne explores how verse has been used to communicate the experience of animal suffering, make analogies between human and animal societies, and imagine the human condition from an animal perspective.
On November 9, Heather Keenleyside will present “Frankenstein.” Mary Shelley’s novel is one of modernity’s central myths, a unique lens through which to understand the anxieties and aspirations of a rapidly changing civilization. In the wake of Frankenstein’s publication in 1818, what it meant to be human was no longer clear. To give us added perspective, Keenleyside frames the novel within the intellectual context of the Enlightenment and contemporary society’s approach to issues of monstrosity and animal embodiment.