|6 Nov 2008
|5:00pm - 7:00pm
A good deal of work has been done recently on 18th-century fables and it-narratives, fictions in which animals have voices and things get to talk about their experiences. There are two assumptions guiding these enquiries. The first is that a talking animal or thing is really a human being in disguise, or a conveniently oblique mouthpiece for the author. The second is that the thing or animal is a commodity, circulating within a system of exchange. I should like to offer an alternative to both of these assumptions by defending mine: namely that articulate things and creatures have their own agenda, that they know very well the difference between humans and the humanity they pretend to, that they do not care to imitate the one or claim the other, and that for the most part they start talking when they are no longer being handled or owned by us. So what do they do, and what do they say? I shall offer some examples and attempt a synthesis.
Lecture followed by Wine Reception
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