ANTHROPOLOGICAL STUDY OF RECREATIONAL HUNTERS, UNGOVERNABLE PIGS, AND THE FERAL IN AUSTRALIA
Domestic pigs introduced to Australia by British colonial settlers now run wild and have been branded "feral": animals out-of-control, out-of-place, and "killable"
The two-year EU co-funded project will examine Australia's relationship with this abject yet extraordinary being through pig hunting. More-than-human ethnographic research with recreational hunters will deliver novel insights on an under-studied and controversial interspecies interaction. Further, hunting offers an unexpected opening to explore perspectives on the place, identity, and becoming of free-roaming pigs in Australia.
This project will also critically analyse the concept of feral and how its meaning takes shape within the local context. How is the term used to unmake an animal's proliferating and problematic ways-of-being in Australian socio-ecologies? Does the feral represent a cultural anxiety towards an unpredictable, risky, and ungovernable aspect of nonhuman animals? In what ways is this new wild delineated from native forms of wildness?