© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2009 DOI: 10.1163/156853009X418064 Society and Animals 17 (2009) 115-135 brill.nl/soan Choreographing Identities and Emotions in Organizations: Doing “Huminality” on a Geriatric Ward 1 Gladys L. Symons Université du Québec firstname.lastname@example.org Abstract Th is paper addresses the coconstruction of identities and emotions through the human/animal relationship, arguing that nonhuman animals can and do act as coagents in interspecies encoun- ters. Th e paper narrates the extraordinary boundary-transgressing experiences of a particular kind of co(a)gency labeled “huminality” (the ongoing aﬀ ective relationship of human and ani- mal). An autoethnographic account of pet-visitation involving a woman, a West Highland white terrier named Fergus, and geriatric residents demonstrates the power of huminality to authorize the emergence and realization of diﬀ erent identities and selves. Examples include the intimate friend, the digniﬁ ed self, the institutional resister, the gift-giver, and the available self. Huminal- ity, in the emotional spacetime of the hospital, is rooted in empathy, concern, and aﬀ ection. As ontological choreography, huminality takes us past the animal-Nature/human-culture frontier into uncharted territories of spacetime to engage in forms of life with nonhuman others. Encoun- ters with animals, even on a geriatric ward, can transform our universe and
Society & Animals – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2009
Keywords: GERIATRICS; PET THERAPY; AUTOETHNOGRAPHY; EMOTIONS IN ORGANIZATIONS; HUMAN/ANIMAL RELATIONSHIP; EMOTIONAL SPACETIME; HUMINAL ENCOUNTER; IDENTITY; SELF; HUMINALITY; ONTOLOGICAL CHOREOGRAPHY; HOSPITAL
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