Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Animalia AmericanaAnimal Representations and Biopolitical Subjectivity$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Colleen Boggs

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231161237

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231161237.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 26 September 2021

Animals, Affect, and the Formation of Liberal Subjectivity

Animals, Affect, and the Formation of Liberal Subjectivity

(p.133) 4 Animals, Affect, and the Formation of Liberal Subjectivity
Animalia Americana

Emily Dickinson

Columbia University Press

This chapter examines how the scene of bestiality gets rewritten as one of “puppy love” with the rise of sentimentalism in the nineteenth century and its permutations in the twentieth century. In particular, it considers the role played by theories of childhood education for understandings of subjectivity and the way in which infantilization—as a practice, as a strategy—maps animal relations onto psychological and commoditized object relations. The discussion focuses on Emily Dickinson's poetry and her experimentations with animal representations as they relate to affect theory, as well as her use of the explicitly humanist framework of liberal subject formation to radically rethink the parameters and representational modes of subject formation. The chapter shows how Dickinson, by engaging with the pedagogical and literary models that became a staple of childhood education in the nineteenth century, stretches our understanding of literary representation beyond symbolization by rethinking orthography as a confrontation with literal animals.

Keywords:   bestiality, childhood education, subjectivity, infantilization, animal relations, object relations, Emily Dickinson, poetry, animal representations, affect theory

Columbia Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .