Dr Rhoda Wilkie
My primary research focus is human-animal interaction from a sociological perspective.
My doctoral thesis (2002) explores the experiences, attitudes and feelings of agricultural workers (e.g. farmers, stockpeople, auctioneers, vets and slaughter workers), and hobby farmers, who work with commercial and rare breeds of livestock as part of their everyday lives.
This research addresses an under-explored and little understood area in contemporary life. It also highlights the multifaceted, gendered and ambiguous nature of people's practical relations with livetsock, and thus provides an opportunity to gain fresh insights into longstanding debates about the production, and slaughter, of food animals in modern industrialised societies.
This work was published in 2010 in the Temple University Press Book Series, Animals, Culture, and Society, edited by Arnold Arluke and Clinton R. Sanders:Livestock/Deadstock: Working with Farm Animals from Birth to Slaughter.
- Winner of the British Sociological Association's Philip Abrams Memorial Prize in April 2011; the prize is awarded for the 'best first sole-authored book within the discipline of Sociology': http://www.britsoc.co.uk/publications/PAM.htm
- Award for Distinguished Scholarship in the Animals and Society Section of the American Sociological Association, 2011
For more information about Livestock/Deadstock see:http://www.temple.edu/tempress/titles/1908_reg.html
I remain interested in interspecies work contexts and issues.
Finally, given the 'animal turn' taking place in the social sciences, I am beginning to consider how, and to what extent, research carried out by human-animal studies (HAS) scholars might inform, challenge and potentially revise 'mainstream' sociology. I am also exploring how sociologically-informed contributions might further augment and develop the burgeoning interdisciplinary field of HAS. This two-way process of disciplinary stock-taking not only provides an opportunity to reflect on a number of key theoretical, methodological and empirical challenges facing those involved in this innovative area of research but it also opens up the possibility of increasingly 'animalising sociology' and 'sociologising HAS'.
I lecture on the following undergraduate courses (2012-2013):
Introduction to Sociology 2 (SO 1506)
Humans and Other Animals (6C 1001/1501)
Studying Social Life 2 (SO 2505)
Social Research Methods (SO 3524)
Animals and Society (SO 4545).
I am the course coordinator for Animals and Society which came on stream in January 2011.
I am also the course coordinator for Studying Social Life 2: i.e. SO 2504 and SO 2505.
On the Editorial Board of Society and Animals (2006-present)
Founding member and convenor of the British Sociological Association Animal/Human Studies Group (i.e. 2006 - present). For more information see: http://www.britsoc.co.uk/specialisms/AHSG.htm
A member of the European Encyclopedia of Animal Welfare Advisory Board: http://eeaw.univie.ac.at/about/
Teaching and Learning Representative (Sociology)
School Representative on the College Workplacement Working Group
Staff/Student Liaison Officer for Sociology
Library Representative for Sociology
Non-Honours Advisor of Studies
Working Papers and Discussion Papers
- Wilkie, RM. (2006). 'Sentient Commodities: A Sociological Exploration of Human-Food Animal Interaction'. Research Paper Series, Gibson Institute for Land, Food and Environment Research Paper Series, Belfast, pp. 1-40.
Contributions to Journals
- Wilkie, RM. (in press). 'Multispecies Scholarship and Encounters: Changing Assumptions at the Human-Animal Nexus'. Sociology.
- Wilkie, RM. (in press). 'Academic "Dirty Work": Mapping Scholarly Labour in a Tainted Mixed-Species Field'. Society & Animals.
- Wilkie, RM. (2005). 'Sentient commodities and productive paradoxes: the ambiguous nature of human-livestock relations in Northeast Scotland'. Journal of Rural Studies, vol 21, no. 2, pp. 213-230.
[Online] DOI: 10.1016/J.JRURSTUD.2004.10.002
- McLeod, R. (1998). 'Calf Exports at Brightlingsea'. Parliamentary Affairs, vol 51, no. 3, pp. 345-57.
Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings
- Wilkie, RM. 'Animals as Sentient Commodities'. in The Oxford Handbook of Animal Studies. Oxford University Press, New York.
- Wilkie, RM. & Inglis, D. (2007). 'Animals and Humans: The Unspoken Basis of Social Life'. in R Wilkie & DI (eds), Animals and Society: Critical Concepts in in the Social Sciences. vol. 1-5, Critical Concepts in in the Social Sciences, Routledge, London, United Kingdom, pp. 1-46.
- Inglis, D., Bone, JD. & Wilkie, RM. (2005). 'Nature: Perceiving the 'Natural' Inside and Outside of Social Scientific Boundaries'. in D Inglis, J Bone & R Wilkie (eds), Nature: Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences. vol. 1-4, Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences, Routledge, London, United Kingdom, pp. 1-26.
- McLeod, R. (1998). 'Calf Exports at Brightlingsea'. in FF Ridley & G Jordon (eds), Protest Politics: Cause Groups and Campaigns. Hansard Society Series in Politics and Government, Oxford University Press, Oxford, United Kingdom, pp. 37-49.
Books and Reports
- Wilkie, RM., Arluke, A. (ed.) & Sanders, CR. (ed.) (2010). 'Livestock/Deadstock: Working with Farm Animals from Birth to Slaughter'. Temple University Press, Philadelphia.
- Wilkie, RM. & Inglis, D. (eds) (2007). 'Animals and Society: Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences'. Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences, vol. 1-5, Routledge, London.
- Inglis, D., Bone, JD. & Wilkie, RM. (eds) (2005). 'Nature: Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences'. Critical Concepts in the Social Sciences, Routledge, London, United Kingdom.