ENS283 Introduction to Animal Studies

Faculty of Social Studies
Autumn 2018
Extent and Intensity
0/2/0. 4 credit(s). Type of Completion: z (credit).
PhDr. Tereza Vandrovcová, Ph.D. (lecturer)
doc. Mgr. Bohuslav Binka, Ph.D. (lecturer)
Guaranteed by
doc. Mgr. Bohuslav Binka, Ph.D.
Department of Environmental Studies - Faculty of Social Studies
Contact Person: Ing. Veronika Išová
Supplier department: Department of Environmental Studies - Faculty of Social Studies
each even Monday 12:00–15:40 P22
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is also offered to the students of the fields other than those the course is directly associated with.
fields of study / plans the course is directly associated with
there are 21 fields of study the course is directly associated with, display
Course objectives
Animal Studies (also Human-Animal Studies or Anthrozoology) is relatively new, but dynamically developing field within social science which explore various relationships among humans and other animals. These relationships are perceived from the perspecitve of social sciences. It means that it is not about studying animals per se (like in biology or ethology, even though AS uses its findings) but it is about studying of animals' status in society, interspecies interactions, their changes within the history, influence of animals on human behavior and lot of other topics, which are related to the relationship of humans and other animals. Upon completion of this course, students should be able to understand Animal Studies as an interdisciplinary field within social sciences. They will understand the social construction of nonhuman animals and will reflect this process by themselves in other areas. Students will be able to discuss ethical approaches toward nonhumans' social status and reflect critically upon their own biases stemming forom the cultural patterns.
  • 1) Introduction to Animal Studies
  • 2) Animal Subjectivity - excursion into ethology
  • 3) Ethic
  • 4) Animal as a food + setting of qualitative interview
  • 5) History
  • 6) Animal as an scientific object
  • 7) Pets and Animal Assisted Therapy
  • 8) Deviation - connection with interpersonal violence
  • 9) Religion
  • 10) Wild animals - protection, hunting, zoos and circuses
  • SINGER, Peter. Osvobození zvířat. Vyd. 1. Praha: Práh, 2001. 259 s. ISBN 8072520423. info
  • Phillips, M. T. 1993. Savages, drunks, and lab animals: The researcher's perception of pain. Society and Animals 1 (1), pp. 61-81
  • Mullin, M. H. 1999. Mirrors and Windows: Sociocultural Studies of Human-animal Relationships. Annual Review of Anthropology, 28, pp. 201-224.
  • Preece, R. and Fraser, D. 2000. The Status of Animals in Biblical and Christian Thought: A Study in Colliding Values. Society and Animals 8 (3), pp. 245-263.
  • Abeyesinghe, S.M. (et al) 2005. Can domestic fowl, Gallus gallus domesticus, show self-control? Animal Behaviour 70 (1), pp.1-11
  • Berger, John 1980: Why look at animals? pp. 12-37.
  • Blouin, D. D. 2012. Understanding Relations between People and their Pets. Sociology Compass, 6 (11), pp. 858 - 863
  • Joy, M. 2009. To Love or to Eat? (Chapter 1) in Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows An Introduction to Carnism, San Francisco: Conari Press, pp. 11-21.
  • Shaw, D. G. 2013. The Torturer's Horse: Agency and Animals in History. History and Theory 52, pp.146-167
  • Ascione. F. R. 1998. Battered women's reports of their partners' and their children's cruelty to animals. Journal of Emotional Abuse, 1, pp. 119-133.
Teaching methods
This course will be a combination of lecture and seminar and it expects active participation of students. Homework will involve English resources therefore it is important to read in English to complete these tasks.
Assessment methods
Students can choose arbitrary combination of following tasks. It is necessary to gain 6 points.
• annotation (1800 characters) 1 point
• field task (observation/reflection) 1 point
• essay regarding animals in human society (4000-6000 char.) 2 points
• regular attendance (min 70 %) and active involving in discussions 3 points
• conducting of a qualitative interview about carnism (will be specified) 3 points
Language of instruction
Further comments (probably available only in Czech)
Study Materials
The course is taught annually.
Listed among pre-requisites of other courses
The course is also listed under the following terms Autumn 2015, Autumn 2016, Autumn 2017, Autumn 2019.
  • Enrolment Statistics (Autumn 2018, recent)
  • Permalink: https://is.muni.cz/course/fss/autumn2018/ENS283