Surviving with Companion Animals in Japan

Surviving with Companion Animals in Japan PDF book examines how relationships between guardians and companion animals were challenged during a large-scale disaster: the tsunami of March 2011 and the following nuclear disaster in Fukushima. The author interrogates: 1) How did guardians and their companion animals survive the large disaster?; 2) Why was the relationship between guardians and their companion animals ignored during and after a disaster?; and 3) What structures and/or mechanisms shaped the outcomes for animals and their guardians? Through a critical realist framework, combined with a theoretical perspective developed by Roy Bhaskar and his colleagues, the author argues that despite the trivialization of companion animals by government officials, relationships between animals and guardians were often able to be maintained, in some cases through great pains by the guardians. While the notion of human-animal relationships in Japan has thus far been dominated by economic logic, the author reveals dynamics between guardians and companion animal transcend such structures, forging the concept of “bonding rights.”

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