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Thinking like a fish? Engaging with nonhuman difference through recreational angling

Bear, Christopher; Eden, Sally


Christopher Bear

Sally Eden


This paper investigates how recreational anglers make sense of, and engage with, fish behaviour over space and time. Drawing on fieldwork conducted around rivers in Yorkshire, UK, it explores how anglers differently categorise and differentiate between fish through their fishing practices. Drawing on Deleuze and Guattari's notion of becoming-animal, and attentive to Haraway's concerns for ''beings-in-encounter'', the paper examines angling as a transformative practice whereby anglers and fish adapt through their coconstitutive encounters. While anglers often attempt to think like a fish' when deciding on their tactics, we demonstrate their ambiguous classification of fish' on the basis of species, size, and rhythm. Their attempts to become-fish are not always, therefore, with Haraway's ''actual animals'' but with complex groupings. The paper argues that studies should be more attentive to the heterogeneity of the categories of human and nonhuman. It is also critical of assumptions that certain animals, such as fish, are alien to humans and calls for greater attention to be paid to these and to the nondairy spaces in which they dwell.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Apr 21, 2011
Journal Environment and planning D : society and space
Print ISSN 0263-7758
Electronic ISSN 1472-3433
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 29
Issue 2
Pages 336-352
APA6 Citation Bear, C., & Eden, S. (2011). Thinking like a fish? Engaging with nonhuman difference through recreational angling. Environment and planning. D, Society & space, 29(2), 336-352.
Keywords Fish behaviour, Angling
Publisher URL
Additional Information Authors' accepted manuscript of article published in: Environment and planning D : society and space, 2011, v.29, issue 2.


9492 geogBear C and Eden S in press 2010 Thinking Like a Fish EPD.pdf (544 Kb)

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