Digitizing the 'Animal Turn'

Dog and cat from "A Letter to Children." From John Ptak Collection of Animal Rights and Animal Welfare Printed Education Materials.

Dog and cat from "A Letter to Children." From John Ptak Collection of Animal Rights and Animal Welfare Printed Education Materials.

This summer, the SCRC embarked on a three-year, grant-funded digitization project called ‘The Animal Turn’: Digitizing Animal Protection and Human-Animal Studies Collections. This project was undertaken in partnership with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) with funding from the Council on Library and Information Resources.

Over the course of the next three years, 239,000 pages of our own archival materials and 150,000 pages of archival materials from the ASPCA will be made available online for the first time. These materials will help researchers around the world trace the history of animal protection movements and animal protection organizations, and will provide valuable resources for a variety of different disciplines.

Horses from "Ways of Kindness," which was intended to teach children about ways to be kind to animals in their daily lives. From the John Ptak Collection of Animal Rights and Animal Welfare Printed Education Materials.

The 'animal turn' is a phrase commonly associated with human-animal studies, a multi-disciplinary field that examines relationships between humans and other animals in a variety of contexts. In later blog posts, we'll explore a number of ways that the materials we're digitizing through this project will touch on the many disciplines involved in human-animal studies, as well as highlight interesting items we find in the collections we're working with. As of right now, we’ve put 60 resources online, with more being added every week. Stay tuned!

For more information about the Animal Turn project and the collections we'll be digitizing, visit the project website.