Intersectional oppression across species boundaries: Swedish dairy production as force of oppressive ideology and practice
intersectionality of oppression
Swedish dairy farming
critical animal studies
Full recordShow full item record
AbstractThis study demonstrates that the anthropocentric human-animal divide perpetuates violent ideologies and practices by emphasising the intersectionality of oppression across species boundaries. Taking the practice of Swedish dairy farming and inherent ideologies as a case of such intersectional oppression, the Othering of bovines and their treatment as means of production is problematised. This is done by discussing the political and social investment into pro-animal welfare ideologies as distinctly Swedish values, which are believed to create added value in national dairy production and serve to portray the farming of cows as progressive and ethically justifiable. Drawing on conceptual frames of Critical Animal Studies and employing a critical realist approach to intersectionality, the study examines online material of key stakeholders of the Swedish dairy industry as well as semi-structured interviews with dairy farmers in Skåne, Sweden. The study shows that key practices and beliefs of Swedish dairy production and consumption serve as tool and impetus to cultivate processes of social exclusion, primarily by determining cow’s economic “use value” over human-identified social differences, which holds shared discriminatory logics as other processes of social exclusion.