Book Excerpt! Poetry and Animals, by Onno Oerlemans (introduction)

Oerlemans interrogates how poetry, as a specific form of writing, “reveals tendrils of meaning about animals that other kinds of writing and thinking do not.” His astonishing close readings of choice examples illuminate how poetry sustains a productive ambiguity and openness in the representation—which always involves interpretation—of animals. Great for anyone teaching, writing about, or even just trying to pay attention to animals.

~ Susan McHugh, University of New England

Read an excerpt from the introduction of Poetry and Animals: Blurring the Boundaries with the Human, by Onno Oerlemans. In this work Oerlemans explores a broad range of English-language poetry about animals from the Middle Ages to the contemporary world. Through careful readings of dozens of poems, Oerlemans demonstrates how poetry can sensitize us to the moral standing of animals and give us new ways to think through the problems of the human-animal divide.

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