Welcome to Animalia: An Anthrozoology Journal. This project has been in the making since 2011, the first year of my Master of Science program in Anthrozoology at Canisius College. Thanks to the efforts of a handful of dedicated individuals and talented scholars, we now have several articles available for your perusal, and we hope you find them educational and valuable.
As I designed this website, I wanted to ignite thought about the multitude of ways that humans consider, relate to, and use nonhumans. The header at the top of this page will load a different image each time it is visited. You will see, among others, animals used for food, military operations, and entertainment; liminal animals, or those who live on the edges of human society; wildlife, animals so far from our experience that we stand in awe and hunger for knowledge of them; symbolic animals, such as the bald eagle, whose strength Americans have come to imagine as their own; and, of course, the domestic pets who occupy our homes and our hearts. Please do not mistake any single picture’s inclusion for endorsement, nor for disapproval of the activities within. Instead, they are meant to evoke interest, to spark conversation, to encourage reflection on the obvious and not-so-obvious ways we interact with nonhumans on a regular basis. While images can do all of the above, it is the rigorous scholarship within these published articles that undertakes these charges with the force of critical thought and the difficult questions that such thought requires.
Much as this journal has undergone several iterations, so too I find myself in continual metamorphosis as I’ve undertaken education, both formal and informal, in animal studies. Practices and viewpoints that I have taken for granted my entire life are constantly questioned, revised, rejected, strengthened, and everything in between. It is my hope that the scholarship we promote at Animalia aids you along your own enduring journey.
-Jessica Austin, Co-managing Editor and Founder