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ILHRU Speaker Series: Law and the Political Economy of Animals
Fri 31 March 2017, 14:00 – 15:30 BST
Law and the Political Economy of Animals
by Dr Yoriko Otomo
Lecturer in Law, SOAS, University of London
'Why look at animals?' asked the late John Berger. For us legal scholars, it is important to look at animals because they tell us a great deal about how the law constructs our human selves (and our political community). In this talk I look at the symbolic, narrative and ideological power of animals by examining legal discourse and the operation of international law agreements. In thinking about how we regulate our relationships with animals (and animal parts), we can trace another story about the development of today's globalised and urbanised law.
Dr Yoriko Otomo is a Lecturer in Law at SOAS, and recently a Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Global History, University of Oxford and the University of New South Wales. She received her doctorate (as well as a BA and Honours degree in Law) from the University of Melbourne.Her research examines cross-cultural histories of global governance, looking in particular at the ways in which emerging patterns of economic interdependence changed representations of women and animals. She is working on a project, ‘White Revolutions’ that examines the development of the dairy industries in colonial Britain, and is also co-editing a book, ‘Making Milk: The Past, Present and Future of Our Primary Food’ with Professor Mathilde Cohen. Yoriko’s recent book, 'Unconditional Life: The International Law Settlement' was published by OUP and she has written various articles on environmental law history and animal law.