Vulnerable Becomings: Reimagining Human Relationships with Horses and Other Beings

in Society & Animals
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Abstract

This piece is part of a larger ethnographic and auto-ethnographic project exploring the intersubjective nature of human-horse entanglements. After elucidating how relationships between horses and humans are often reflective of broader oppressive power structures in human societies, I explore alternative ways of being with horses that create space for reciprocity and have the potential to upend hierarchical logics of domination. I focus on rhythmic attunement and co-created “movement languages,” emphasizing the importance of shared vulnerability, a recognition of individuality, and an attitude of openness rather than control. Ultimately, my experiences with horses function as a starting point for reconceiving our relationships with our other human and nonhuman earthly cohabitants.

Vulnerable Becomings: Reimagining Human Relationships with Horses and Other Beings

in Society & Animals

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  • View in gallery
    My trainer and horse Xolotlan—Costa Rica, 2015; see leg mirroring and Xolotlan’s left ear perked toward my trainer
  • View in gallery
    Sonja and Ranger—Liberty Play, Costa Rica, June 2015 (orange training stick pictured)
  • View in gallery
    Santi and I—Liberty Play, Costa Rica, July 2015
  • View in gallery
    Santi and I—Liberty Play, Costa Rica, July 2015

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