This study explores the value of traditional ethnographic methods in sociology for the study of human-animal and animal-animal interactions and culture. Itargues that some measure of human-animal intersubjectivity is possible and that the method of participant observation is best suited to achieve this. Applying ethnographic methods to human-cat and cat-cat relationships in a no-kill cat shelter, the study presents initial findings; it concludes that the social structure of the shelter is the product of interaction both between humans and cats and cats and cats and that the observed structure represents, to a large degree, choices made by the cats. The study also concludes that, within the cat community of the shelter, a distinctive cat culture has emerged, which represents the cats' adaptation to the particular conditions of shelter life. Specifically, the shelter allows for the emergence of higher order needs and goals that stress affection, friendship, and social cohesion among the cats rather than territoriality and conflict. The study further argues that traditional animal researchers have mistaken the relative equality of cat colonies for a lack of social structure, as opposed to a different structure from that found in sharply ranked nonhuman animal communities.
Society & Animals – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1999
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera