Dr Carol Freeman (Australia)

Carol has a BA with majors in English/Cultural Studies and History, and a PhD from the University of Tasmania where she is currently a Research Associate in the School of Geography and Environmental Studies.

She has been involved in the interdisciplinary field of Human-Animal Studies since 2000 when her Honours project, “Feathering the Text: (Re)reading the Animal in Medieval Writing”, proposed a radical new way of approaching the animal in literary works.

Her major research project was an interdisciplinary study on the impact of zoological illustrations of the thylacine (Tasmanian ‘tiger') on the extinction of the species.

Her current research focuses on the politics of representing animals, particularly extinct and threatened species; the role of animals in constituting perceptions of place; picturing animals in popular culture and wildlife documentaries; and interactions between representations and living animals.

She is a member of the Animals and Society Study Group (Aust) and a founding member of the UTAS Animals & Society Study Group and editor of their E-bulletin.

She is actively involved in organising the second Australian Animals and Society conference – ‘Considering Animals' – to be held in Hobart, Tasmania, in 2007.

Carol is committed to bridging the gap between scientific approaches to animal species and new research in HAS that focuses on human-animal relations and cultural and social understandings of animals.

She has recently curated a multi-media exhibition of 200 years of thylacine images that included contemporary advertising, animatronics, and reference to cloning debates.

She is now working on an online version of the display. Her work on thylacine images has been the subject of several newspaper reports and national Australian radio interviews. For more information visit her personal web page.

Selected Publications

Freeman, Carol. ‘“In every respect new': Tracing the history of the first illustration of a thylacine in a scientific journal, 1808-1855”. reCollections Journal of the National Museum of Australia vol. 2.1 (2007), in press.

Freeman, Carol. “ Imaging Extinction: Disclosure and Revision in Photographs of the Thylacine (Tasmanian tiger)”. Society and Animals: Journal of Human-Animal Studies vol. 15.2 or 3 (2007), forthcoming.

Freeman, C. “Imaging the Thylacine from Trap to Laboratory”, Multi-media exhibition at Morris Miller Library, University of Tasmania , July-August 2006.

Freeman, Carol “Is this picture worth a thousand words? An analysis of Harry Burrell's photograph of a thylacine with a chicken”. Australian Zoologist vol. 33, June 2005.