Designing engagements with animals to find, imagine, or emphasize non-speciesist practices
It was a great honor and pleasure to be interviewed by Stephen Dent for the Beyond Species Podcast. We had a very interesting conversation about imagining multispecies worlds, and we discussed, challenged, and speculated on several different stories of the multispecies bestiary that was a part of my PhD dissertation. These involve thought exchanges on octopuses, sheep, and monsters specifically. Here are the episode notes as well as a link to listen to the interview. Also make sure to check out some of the other episodes in this impressive collection of conversations on anti-speciesist research and activism.
Episode 29. In this episode, we hear from Dr. Michelle Westerlaken. Michelle explains her concept of multispecies-isms or multispecies worlding – a response to speciesism that looks for traces of how we humans interact with other species in our everyday lives, so as to imagine how relationships might take place in a non-speciesist future. Michelle’s work draws in strands from a range of disciplines, including interaction design, posthumanism and indigenous ways of knowing. Michelle finds the ethic of care a challenging but generative concept worth exploring. She also discusses the concept of the Bestiary in her thesis, which opens up spaces for nonhumans to “tell” stories, as well as to push our questions around speciesism into controversial territory. Gaming can also provide imaginative spaces for vegans to explore their ethics and enact non-speciesist worlding.
(image and episode notes via Stephen Dent)