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For the love of goats: the advantages of alterity

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  • Ann Finan

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Abstract

Small-scale, artisanal livestock production is framed as “other” by conventional livestock producers, and rural communities. This alterity, although not without cost, allows women to be involved as active entrepreneurs and managers in artisanal livestock production and also allows farmers to pursue management strategies with the explicit purpose of enhancing animal welfare. The case study presented here, an artisanal goat dairy farm managed by three women, demonstrates that by embracing feminine care identities, these women carve a space for themselves within livestock production in which they can pursue their own economic and affective goals. Analysis of ethnographic data also demonstrates that farmers’ decision-making regarding animal production is based on both affective and instrumental concerns. If we are to understand and operationalize the affective component of farmer decision making based on the livestock–farmer relationship, we must begin to consider to what extent livestock themselves are social actors. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Suggested Citation

  • Ann Finan, 2011. "For the love of goats: the advantages of alterity," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 28(1), pages 81-96, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:agrhuv:v:28:y:2011:i:1:p:81-96
    DOI: 10.1007/s10460-010-9284-8
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10460-010-9284-8
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Janel Curry, 2002. "Care Theory and ``caring'' systems of agriculture," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 19(2), pages 119-131, June.
    2. Sandra Weber, 2007. "Saving St. James: A case study of farmwomen entrepreneurs," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 24(4), pages 425-434, December.
    3. Berit Brandth, 2002. "On the relationship between feminism and farm women," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 19(2), pages 107-117, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jennifer Ball, 2014. "She works hard for the money: women in Kansas agriculture," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 31(4), pages 593-605, December.
    2. Mira Lehberger & Norbert Hirschauer, 2016. "Recruitment problems and the shortage of junior corporate farm managers in Germany: the role of gender-specific assessments and life aspirations," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 33(3), pages 611-624, September.

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