Exploring animals as agents and objects in Early Medieval Iceland and Scandinavia

Evans Tang, Harriet, J. and Ruiter, Keith (2023) Exploring animals as agents and objects in Early Medieval Iceland and Scandinavia. In: Animals and Animated Objects in the Early Middle Ages. Brepols Publishers, Turnhout. ISBN 9782503600901

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This chapter offers new explorations of animal–human relationships, specifically but not limited to the human–horse relationship in Viking Age and medieval Scandinavian evidence. Working between literary and legal texts, as well as mortuary archaeology, it asks a key question of these sources: How did medieval Scandinavians conceive of their relationships with certain animals, especially the horse? Taking a posthumanist perspective, the analysis here suggests that animals could occupy a complicated conceptual and legal space that, while not quite ‘human’, was attributed with its own intricate understanding and expression of personhood. This non-human personhood, when explored in transdisciplinary ways, reveals that, much like humans, animals can be both agent and object in medieval networks and mindscapes, making this fertile ground for further inquiry.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: Scandinavia, Viking, Iceland, Animal, Horse, thing, law, literature, Archaeology, History, agency, autonomy, personhood, multiple burial, Mythology, Animal Studies
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CC Archaeology
D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D111 Medieval History
D History General and Old World > DL Northern Europe. Scandinavia
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PD Germanic languages
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0441 Literary History
S Agriculture > SF Animal culture
Divisions: Faculty of Arts, Business & Applied Social Science > Department of Arts & Humanities
Depositing User: Keith Ruiter
Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2022 14:23
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2023 13:06
URI: https://oars.uos.ac.uk/id/eprint/2832

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