Workshops: ‘“Going to the Dogs”? The intersections of Disability and Animal Studies’, Leeds

Date: 2-5pm, Monday 19th February 2018

Location: Leeds Centre for Medical Humanities, School of English, 6–10 Cavendish Road, Leeds

Responding to recent scholarship that has placed disability and animal studies in critical dialogue (see, for instance, Sunaura Taylor’s new book and the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies recent call for papers), this workshop will bring together three Leeds-based scholars, who will each approach the intersection of disability and animal studies from a different disciplinary and methodological perspective. The session will feature Karen Sayer, who is a Professor of Social and Cultural History at Leeds Trinity University; Sunny Harrison, who is a PhD candidate in the Institute for Medieval Studies at the University of Leeds; and Leah Burch, who is a PhD candidate in Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Leeds. Respectively, their talks will cover the following topics:

  • Models of utility, disability, and occupational health in later medieval horse medicine.
  • The conceptualisation of disabled human labourers relative to conceptualisations of farm animals in nineteenth-century agriculture.
  • Instances of disability being animalised in contemporary hate speech.

Each talk will be followed by time for questions, and the workshop will end with a roundtable discussion about the ethical and methodological challenges of working on themes of disability and animals together. Tea and coffee will be provided.

If you have any questions or would like to book a place at the workshop in February—for FREE — please email the organiser, Dr Ryan Sweet, including details of anything that can be done to ensure that the event is accessible for you. Ryan’s email address is

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