New ‘animal studies’ courses look at culture, not biology

By Jennifer Epstein, USA Today

In his first year as an assistant professor in the University of Iowa’s archaeology department, Matthew E. Hill made a move that many other junior faculty would have considered risky: he said he wanted to teach an undergraduate seminar on animals and culture.

“When I first proposed the course, I thought I would get a more negative response — ‘Oh, it’s fluffy’ — and I still worry about some of my colleagues having that attitude,” he says. “But my chair and other people have been supportive, interested.”

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