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Research The Groningen Research Institute for the Study of Culture (ICOG) Research Research centres Centre for International Relations Research (CIRR) Chair Group on History and Theory of International Relations Research themes Sheep, wool, landscape and connectivity

What’s in a name?

On animals, value and the bio-economy


This paper examines the role that the preservation of three breeds of sheep, the Xisqueta, the Sambucana and the Herdwick, plays in the renewal of agricultural communities in the Catalan Pyrenees, the Maritime Alps and the Lake District. In so doing, the paper contests the notion that the contemporary convergence of economy and the embodied existence of both human and non-human animal species signals the emergence of a novel and distinctive economic formation, the bio-economy. At the same time, however, the paper also explores the extent to which the configuration of sheep and shepherding in the Catalan Pyrenees illustrates the implications of the transition to a properly bio-economic formation for any understanding of the relationship between human and non-human animals. This exploration brings the value attached to the encounter of human and non-human animals into dialogue with an understanding of related heterogeneous assemblages as fields of intensive flow.
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Last modified:21 April 2017 2.47 p.m.