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Animals, Representation and Popular Culture

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Andrea Guglielmi

on 15 October 2013

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Transcript of Animals, Representation and Popular Culture

Animals, Representation and Popular Culture
Animals in advertisements

1. Animals as loved
2. Animals as a symbol (ex turtle is slow)
3. Animals as a nuisance
4. Animals in nature
5. Animals as a tool (food, recreation)
6. Animal as an allegory (animals doing human things, ex ordering food or driving)


- Hegemonic notions of masculinity
- Hegemonic notions of femininity
- Gendered stereotypes

What gender relations can you see in these advertisements? Look at the animal representation, what the ad is for, and the types of words used. How may these also impact the gendered undertones?
Class Activity:
In groups of 3-4 (please assure at least one group member has a laptop present), explore online the ways in which animals have been portrayed within different contexts of the media.
Speciesism, human animal divide, companion animals, anthropomorphisim, disneyization, animal as commodity, and anthropocentracism.
“The ideological bases for our human/animal distinction and our categorization of animals may be our least questioned social hierarchy”

"An animal presented in human form, characterizing animals as humanized, or fantasy" (Lerner & Kalof, 567).

Regarding humans as the pinnacle of evolution; human interests are primary above anything else.
- Ideologies surrounding race determine how an animal is represented
- These ideologies also determine what type of animal is used
- Animals as representations of the “other”

What is the relation to the women in these ads and the animal used to portray them? What is common between the two ads?

- Western ideologies of family
- Nuclear family structure
- Hegemonic notions of family dynamics

The Family Continued...
Animals in Childrens Literature

Animals are used in childrens literature as either
A) stand in for humans
B) actual animals


There are certain levels of anthropormorphism in childrens literature.
-fully anthropormorphic
-a mix of anthropormorphic and animal characteristics
-only animal characteristics

Timothy Goes to School
Uses of animals in literature:

Diversity: Animals have the ability to explain and represent diversity to children without having ethnic stereotypes which might occur by using humans.

Values: Children love and anthropormorphicize animals which makes it easier to teach children different values through animals.

- empathy
- Kindness
- Relationship skills
- Compassion

Adults: As children grow to be adults they are taught that they will no longer need animals. Although animals are still used to represent adult issues such as poverty, and animal abuse.
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