Home Society & Culture Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics Announces Its Summer School Programme

Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics Announces Its Summer School Programme

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The Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics is excited to announce the programme for its 8th annual Summer School at Merton College, Oxford, 7th–10th August 2023.

This year’s Summer School topic is “Animals and the Media”, and we will look at many considerations surrounding communicating ethical perspectives on animals.

The media in all its forms (including print, broadcast, social, cinematic, literary, and artistic) dominates our lives. The Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics Summer School will critically examine the media’s role in positively and negatively representing animals. It will also examine how the media represents the cause of animals and those individuals and societies who seek to protect them.

The Summer School is ambitious in its programme and aims to cover a significant range of subjects around the portrayal of animals in the media. Subjects covered, to name but a few, will include:

  • Psychological effects of repeated exposure to digital media depictions of animal cruelty and neglect
  • Humane-washing as the new greenwashing
  • Leveraging animal representation in popular culture to enhance animals’ status in law and policy
  • Communicating with the general public about the morality of animal research
  • Children’s literature as a channel for disseminating concepts of human-animal relations
  • Consent in animal photography
  • An analysis of media representations of nonhuman animals
  • American art as a catalyst for change
  • An overview of the celebration and vilification of cats in the media

With over 70 talks/workshops over the three days, there is a huge amount on offer and a lot for delegates to delve into.

The speakers’ lineup is also impressive, including many eminent academics, well balanced with numerous other professional perspectives from the fields of law, journalism, art, politics, animal rescue, publishing, ethics, philosophy, economics, and business.

The speakers come from all across the globe; including the UK and Ireland, Europe, Hong Kong, Taiwan, India, Brazil, Israel, Canada, the US, and Australia; offering insight into the representation of animals across many different cultures.

Topping the bill on the afternoon of the first day is a broadcaster, author, and human rights advocate, Peter Tatchell, director of the Peter Tatchell Foundation. He will discuss “What Animal Advocates can learn from my struggle for Human Rights”.

Peter has been campaigning since 1967 on issues of human rights, democracy, civil liberties, LGBTQ+ equality and global justice. Of his many achievements, in 2009, he co-proposed a UN Global Human Rights Index to measure and rank the human rights record of every country – with the aim of incentivising governments to improve their human rights ranking.

The Summer School can be attended as a residential course, or delegates can attend daily. Registration for the 2023 Annual Oxford Animal Ethics Summer School is now open.

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