Saturday, November 19, 2011
The point is that these animals have so thoroughly assimilated the very concept of their own worthlessness that they can appear—excited, eager, with fond wishes for a future constituting more of the same—as living embodiments of others' desires to eat them.
They do not merely offer their blessings on an endeavor dedicated to their destruction; they ratify the worldview and priorities of their destroyers. And so the cow represents herself as beef and the pig as ribs. They are just (temporarily) living stuff.
It is a curious phenomenon, this use of the animals' agency to reaffirm their lack of agency. Curious, but altogether commonplace.
Then again, it should hardly surprise us when animals this warped fail to appreciate the difference between prize-winner and prize.