Representing animals in political processes

Svenja Ahlhaus, University of Hamburg


In this paper, my aim is to discuss the potentials and challenges of political representation of (non-human) animals. Building on the most recent developments in representation theory, I outline conceptual, theoretical and institutional innovations to reframe political representation in a way that could include non-human animals. Distinguishing political representatives authorized by third parties (e.g. political parties dedicated to animals, or animal welfare officers) from self-authorized representatives (such as NGOs or activists), the paper contributes to the growing literature on innovative modes of representing those who cannot speak for themselves.