Some time ago, I took a course in the English department—Literature, Animals, and Society—that had us read the works of Alice Walker, Roald Dahl, Alice Munro, and others. While literature was emphasized, the main focus actually laid more on animals and humanity. The readings explored large ideas: animal rights, gender identity, feminism, Freud, sexualization of animals, and such. The course also dealt with more immediate issues, such as stray animals, pounds, and conservation of wildlife in Taiwan. The overarching theme was a simple question: how do we interact with animals? The answer, however, is a convoluted clutter of contradictions and emotions.
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