The CLAN International Conference took place on 22 and 23 of September 2022. This conference brought together invited experts in the field and the researchers involved in the project to discuss the topic of children-animals relationships.
I have a special affection for this project: the Conference Companion Animals in the Lives of Humans: social and ethical challenges, as it was the first public event that set off the activities of the Human-Animal Studies Hub. It took place at ICS-ULisboa, between 8th and 9th November 2018, jointly organized by the ICS-ULisboa and the Center of Bioethics of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Lisbon. The conference had two keynote speakers (one French and one Portuguese), and during two entire days gathered scholars and practitioners to discuss the relations between companion animals and humans: family, personal life; ageing, health and quality of life; grief and mourning; rights and inequalities; spaces and shared territories. Throughout the two days, it gathered around 120 people. Twenty national and international scholars sent proposals to the Call for Abstracts. In the aftermath of the conference, one publications is being prepared to disseminate part of the knowledge discussed at the conference.
Since 2019, I coordinate a series of annual seminars of the HAS-Hub. This series intends to discuss one particular theme or aspect around the ongoing research and activities of the Hub. We set off with a discussion on the relationship between children and animals, in particular rabbits, linked to project CLAN’s activities. A topic to which we get back in 2021.
Multispecies justice, resilience, and sustainability
In 2023, we maintained the collaboration with the Envisioning Sustainability Hub (Biodiverse Anthropocenes). We had with us Jeff Sebo talking about Multispecies Justice, the reduction of support to activities which are harmful to animals, and the increase of support for just and sustainable alternatives which consider human and nonhuman needs holistically.
Invited Keynote: Jeff Sebo, New York University. 01/06/2023
- Imaging, narrating, institutionalising and realising multispecies justice
In the 2022 edition our seminar was a joint session with the Biodiverse Anthropocenes Hub, at the University of Oulu. We had with us Danielle Celermajer talking about Multispecies Justice, its challenges and possible paths to achieve it.
Invited Keynote: Danielle Celermajer, University of Sydney. 07/06/2022
- A cat amongst the pigeons: becoming an audience member for a childhood publics
In 2021, we go back to the first edition topic: children’s relationships with animals. ERC grantee Melissa Nolas talks about how animals pop up in children’s worlds and narratives on public life.
Invited Keynote: Sevasti-Melissa Nolas, Goldsmiths. 09/06/2021
- Rabbits and Children: A Complicated History
In 2019, we set off the series of the Human-Animal Studies Seminars with Margo DeMello, from the Animals & Society Institute, who talked about the history of rabbits and children—a relationship that we take for granted today, but that is much more complicated than it appears.
Invited Keynote: Margo de Mello, Canisius College, USA.
Animal Wonder. Reading Group in Human-Animal Studies.
Since 2018, I’ve been coordinating one of my dearest recent projects: our Reading Group in Human-Animal Studies. Our goal is to map the field of Human-Animal Studies, both at an international and national level, by discussing some of its fundamental works, ranging from the foundational to the most recent ones. Our readings are structured around three main axes: theories and concepts; multispecies methodologies; and specific themes. In our monthly meetings, we try to build a free space of intellectual debate, drawing on the proposed readings, which aims at supporting the work of researchers whose interests and projects cut across human-animal relations. This is an interdisciplinary group, with a specific focus in the social sciences, with contributions from sociologists, anthropologists, historians and social psychologists. We come from different higher education and research institutions. What brings us together is a common scientific interest in human-animal relations. Our working language is Portuguese, with participants from Portugal and Brazil.
More info: Link
The Post-Human Animal. Webinar on Post-Humanism and Nonhuman Animals
Last year I attended Rosie Braidotti’s summer school on Post-Human Knowledge, 10 days of intensive immersion in post-humanist literature. There, a few of us gathered around a common interest of exploring post-humanist scholarship on non-human animals. This is how The Post-Human Animal was born. We began our webinar in January 2021. We meet online every four months, to discuss important works in post- humanist scholarly literature that address “the animal question”. We are researchers, educators, students, artists, practitioners… We come from different disciplinary backgrounds, different countries and continents. From this collaborative movement and through our encounters, we expect to better understand the contingent and ever- changing multispecies entanglements that characterize our common life-worlds. A dear, bottom-up, collaborative project, in which we have all just begun becoming with each other, as we move fluidly through authors, texts, readings and spoken words. Our working language is English.
More info: Link
The Seminar took place on the 2nd of June at ICS-ULisboa and online (zoom), and joined students from the first and second editions of the course. The Seminar emerged as a way to give students the opportunity to share and discuss the work developed during the course with their peers and academic community. This seminar also welcomed the students from Rainha Dona Leonor High School who presented the projects carried out within the scope of the workshop “Climate Change in Portugal: Multispecies Perspectives” conducted by Maria Saari, a visiting post-doctoral researcher at the HAS-Hub in 2022-23.
CLAN farewell party: 4 October, Day of the Animal. 2022 “Come celebrate with us the end of project CLAN on the day of the animal.”
In the CLAN farewell party, we celebrated the ending of the CLAN project with the families that participated in the project, as well as with the academic community, and other entities.
CLAN Workshops with Families and Stakeholders
This activity had as main objective to give back to the families (children and parents) some of the results produced by the CLAN research team from the data collected during the fieldwork and throughout the length of the project. We also aimed at involving relevant actors and practitioners (veterinarians, psychologists, lawyers, social workers and politicians), by discussing with them some of the relevant axes of the project results. In total, we organized five workshops with children, parents and stakeholders.
- Zooliteratura e subjetividade animal (Zooliterature and animal subjectivity)
This seminar was the opening session of the Animals and Society course. The online session (zoom) was open to all those interested in participating, subject to prior registration. Maria Esther Maciel shows how some contemporary writers go against the anthropocentric humanist thinking, and confer to non-human animals the status of subjects with intelligence, sensitivity and imagination.
Invited Keynote: Maria Esther Maciel, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brasil
- Animals, Literature and Art
The 2020 edition, the internationally renowned Portuguese writer Gonçalo M. Tavares talked about animals, literature and contemporary art.
Invited Keynote: Gonçalo M. Tavares 22/09/2020