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The Animals in Us – We in Animals

Szymon Wrobel

In art and literature, animals appear not only as an allegoric representation but as a reference which troubles the border between humanity and animality. The aim of this book is to challenge traditional ways of confronting animality with humanity and to consider how the Darwinian turn has modified this relationship in postmodern narratives. The subject of animality in culture, ethics, philosophy, art and literature is explored and reevaluated, and a host of questions regarding the conditions of co-existence of humans and animals is asked: Should discourse ethics now include entities that initially seemed mute and were excluded from discussions? Does the modern animal rights movement need a theology, and vice versa, is there a theology that needs animals? Are animals in literature just metaphors of human characters, or do they reveal something more profound, a direction of human desires, or a fantasy of transgressing humanity? This book provides answers and thus gives a new impetus to a so far largely overlooked field.
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Michel de Montaigne’s Atheology of Animality as an Example of Emancipation Tool for Modern Humanity


Jacek Dobrowolski


Diverse concepts of animality have played important role within the processes of modern secularisation and its anti-theological turn in the modern making of “man.” By turning the conceptual focus towards the animal side of human being, and specifically by describing and explaining “the human nature” in terms of its “animality,” modern philosophical anthropology has changed, gradually, into naturalistic, godless discourse of a purely material life. The discovery of the “animal in man,” its increasing impact through evolution theory eventually led to the denial of human supremacy. Since secularisation in its essence intends to emancipate humanity, it is interesting how animalisation can be related to emancipation. In the article Montaigne’s conception of animality is examined as an early case of this thinking.


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