Care, courage, kincentric
Background photo: Jassy Earl, April 2023, Henry's Field, Dartington Estate
Jassy, human, described her relationship with Emily, pig, as one of care, the mud she trails home along the corridor as lines of connection.
'We are only human in contact and conviviality with what is not human' (Abram, 1997)
'Becoming with' Goldcrest, always grasped at the edge of seeing and hearing, was difficult. To me, they are speeders, existing at a different scale of pace. Did I appear to them as sooooo sloooooow? So how do I 'become with' them, with care? van Dooren on Maria Puig's definition of care: affective (to be affected by another), an ethical obligation and involving practical reciprocity. As Isabel Carlisle and Chris Chapman reminded us: we have rights and responsibilites towards the rest of life.
Satish, in his lecture (Ship Studio, Dartington Hall, May 2023) talked of needing courage to be courageous. I need to bolster my heart.
Injured and isolated, African Hunting Dogs die from Broken Heart Syndrome. (BBC Iplayer, 'Dogs in the Wild: Meet the Family)
Where is the agency for joy in our stories about other species?
If happiness is a factor in survival, perhaps we could find ways of noticing our own joy, and the joy experienced by more-than-human.
Abram, David "The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World,
Vintage (edition 1st), 1997
Puig de la Bellacasa, María 'Nothing Comes Without Its World': Thinking with Care, Sociological Review Volume 60, Issue 2
van Dooren, Thom "Care," Environmental Humanities (2014) 5 (1): 291–294, Duke University Press