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Animal Rites
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Animal Rites: American Culture, the Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory

Cary Wolfe


This book examines contemporary notions of humanism and ethics by reconstructing a little-known but crucial underground tradition of theorizing the animal from Wittgenstein, Cavell, and Lyotard to Lévinas, Derrida, Maturana, and Varela. Through detailed readings of how discourses of race, sexuality, colonialism, and animality interact in twentieth-century American culture, the author explores what it means, in theory and critical practice, to take seriously “the question of the animal.”

Keywords: humanism, ethics, animal rights, Wittgenstein, Cavell, Lyotard, Lévinas, Derrida, Maturana, Varela

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2003 Print ISBN-13: 9780226905136
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226905129.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Cary Wolfe, author