Colleen Glenney Boggs puts animal representation at the center
of the making of the liberal American subject. Concentrating on the
formative and disruptive presence of animals in the writings of
Frederick Douglass, Edgar Allan Poe, and Emily Dickinson, Boggs
argues that animals are critical to the ways in which Americans
enact their humanity and regulate subjects in the biopolitical
state. Biopower, or a politics that extends its reach to life,
thrives on the strategic ambivalence between who is considered
human and what is judged as animal. It generates a space of
indeterminacy in which animal representations intervene to define
and challenge the parameters of subjectivity. The renegotiation of
the species line produces a tension that is never fully regulated.
Therefore, as both figures of radical alterity and the embodiment
of biopolitics, animals are simultaneously exceptional and
exemplary to the biopolitical state. An original contribution to
animal studies, American studies, critical race theory, and
posthumanist inquiry, Boggs thrillingly reinterprets a long and
highly contentious human-animal history.
Subjects: Philosophy, Language & Literature
Table of Contents
You are viewing the table of contents
You do not have access to this
on JSTOR. Try logging in through your institution for access.