Other Animals (Paperback)
Beyond the Human in Russian Culture and History (Russian and East European Studies)
University of Pittsburgh Press, 9780822960638, 336pp.
Publication Date: August 15, 2010
Four themes run through the volume: the prevalence of animals in utopian visions; the ways in which Russians have both incorporated and sometimes challenged Western sensibilities and practices, such as the humane treatment of animals and the inclusion of animals in urban domestic life; the quest to identify and at times exploit the physiological basis of human and animal behavior and the ideological implications of these practices; and the breakdown of traditional human-animal hierarchies and categories during times of revolutionary upheaval, social transformation, or disintegration.
From failed Soviet attempts to transplant the semi-nomadic Sami and their reindeer herds onto collective farms, to performance artist Oleg Kulik’s scandalous portrayal of Pavlov’s dogs as a parody of the Soviet “new man,” to novelist Tatyana Tolstaya’s post-cataclysmic future world of hybrid animal species and their disaffection from the past, Other Animals presents a completely new perspective on Russian and Soviet history. It also offers a fascinating look into the Russian psyche as seen through human interactions with animals.
About the Author
Praise For Other Animals: Beyond the Human in Russian Culture and History (Russian and East European Studies)…
—Chris Ely, Florida Atlantic University
—Ronald D. LeBlanc, University of New Hampshire
“A marvelous collection of [essays] that are accessible and of value to the general reader.”
“Eclectic and far-reaching . . . a challenging collection of studies. Its scope is broad and its contributors seem to feel few restrictions in their cross-disciplinary approaches.”
—Slavic and East European Journal
“The sheer range of methodologies and objects of study, as well as the solid research and engaging writing by the contributors, make this collection a stimulating and original read.”
—The Russian Review
“A necessary initial contribution to the study of non-humans in the Russian context. Researchers who wish to investigate the problems of animals in Russian culture will find much in this collection that is useful, and instructors both of undergraduate- and graduate-level classes should find individual chapters relevant to a range of topics in history and literature.”
—The NEP Era