What is a Service Animal? A Careful Rethinking

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Margaret Price


service animal, ethics of care, spacetime


I argue that the discursive tactics used to maintain a clear boundary between “legitimate” and “illegitimate” service animals rely on a set of assumptions that perpetuate unequal relations of power, and ultimately harm others (human and nonhuman alike). In support of this argument, I outline my theory of crip spacetime, which draws upon the material feminist notion that disability is an intersectional and emergent phenomenon, becoming (rather than being) through intra-active environments. Thinking through the ontology of service animals and their human companions in terms of crip spacetime demands that we apply what Christine Kelly (2016) has called accessible care in relationships.

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