Animals make us storytellers
Vinciane Despret is a philosopher and psychologist, professor at the University of Liege. After discovering the work of ethologists, she directed her research towards the philosophy of science. She continues to question our relationship with animals through a number of books: Quand le loup habitera avec l’agneau (When the wolf lives with the lamb); Penser comme un rat (Thinking like a rat); Que diraient les animaux si on leur posait les bonnes questions (What animals would say if we asked them the right questions); Habiter en oiseau (Living as a bird); as well as a book for children, Le Chez-Soi des animaux (The Animals’ Home). His latest book, Autobiography of an Octopus, is a story of anticipation that plunges us into the heart of scientific debates in an indeterminate future. Somewhere between scientific facts and poetic affabulations, a troubling horizon emerges: what if spiders, wombats and octopuses were sending us coded messages in literary form? Through this astonishing experience of thoughts fed by the most recent scientific discoveries, Vinciane Despret opens the possibility of decentering the human condition on Earth.