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Animals and ambivalence, governing farm animal welfare in the European food sector

Miele, Mara, Murdoch, Jonathan and Roe, Emma (2005) Animals and ambivalence, governing farm animal welfare in the European food sector In, Higgins, V. and Lawrence, G. (eds.) Agricultural Governance: Globalization and the New Politics of Regulation. Oxford, UK, Routledge pp. 110-125.

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That humans exploit animals, often in cruel ways, is not open to doubt. Reponsibility for exploitation and cruelty lies unambiguously on the human side of any human-animal divide. For this reason, relations between humans and animals might be described as profoundly asymmetrical (Schiktanz 2004: 2). Asymmetry emerges whenever animals are confined for human purposes, for instance in farms, zoos and homes. As Schiktanz (2004: 2) puts it, “the animal itself has usually no opportunity to force its necessities – everything depends on the good will of the human ‘owner’”. Such asymmetric relations are apparently inevitable, especially in the agricultural domain where billions of animals are raised for slaughter. In fact, farm-based asymmetry is undoubtedly widespread as the modern industrial system leads to the ever-greater intensification, industrialisation and mechanisation of animal production (Fiddes, 1990; Rifkin, 1992; Strassart and Whatmore, 2003).

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Accepted/In Press date: 2005


Local EPrints ID: 58643
ISBN: 0415352290
PURE UUID: 7ab5a96f-44af-45d4-ac95-29e3dff659d0

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Date deposited: 18 Aug 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 14:26

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Author: Mara Miele
Author: Jonathan Murdoch
Author: Emma Roe
Editor: V. Higgins
Editor: G. Lawrence

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