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Author: Núria Almiron

Abstract

Núria Almiron reflects on the solidarity toward displaced humans and nonhumans from the perspective of communication ethics. The author examines Lillie Chouliaraky’s theory of an ethics of irony, which refers to the insincere stance that media and communication promote toward distant suffering. This examination is used to reflect on how the ethical discussion of the representation of distant human suffering—as in the case of migrants and refugees—is strongly shaped by the human-nonhuman binary. The discussion includes much of the criticisms raised against the political economy producing this binary, yet it fails to problematize it. Since racism and speciesism are intertwined, failing to critically address the binary limits the analysis and reinforces the root problem: the structural violence of the world system. The chapter argues that the discussion of the ethics of representing human distant suffering is incomplete, and even counterproductive, without a critical interspecies gaze.

In: Like an Animal: Critical Animal Studies Approaches to Borders, Displacement, and Othering
Volume Editors: Natalie Khazaal and Núria Almiron
The contributors of Like an Animal challenge most fundamental concepts in the fields of racism, dehumanization, borders, displacement, and refugees that rest on the assumption of humanism. They show how we can bend the arc of the moral universe toward justice at the border. The goal of this interdisciplinary collection is twofold. First, to invite border/migration studies to consider a broader social justice perspective that includes nonhuman animals. Second, to start a discussion if nonhumans maybe refugees of a kind and how humans can address nonhumans’ interests and needs from the perspective of addressing refugee issues. As capitalism and the climate crisis are taking a catastrophic toll on the planet, this timely volume exposes the alternative origins of violence that lie at the heart of the planet’s destruction.