Identifying the ways in which, from the earliest manifestations of human culture to the present day, humans have seen other animals as a mirror to themselves.
Exploring how and why some of the most important writers of the past and present focus their work on human-animal relations.
Examining how, by means of symbolism, imagery, allegory and satire, writers have used animals to address what it is to be human, while at the same time drawing attention to the values and emotions that pervade our interactions with the nonhuman world.
Showing how literature and film often use a focus on animals as a kind of defamiliarisation, that is, a way of confronting everyday practices and challenging taken-for-granted assumptions.
Analysing a range of media – including television, advertising, and the Internet – to explore how animal-themed imagery and rhetoric are used in our contemporary, information-rich world.