Whitney Barlow Robles Is the 2023 Tom Regan Research Fellow

Whitney Barlow Robles

CAF is delighted to announce that Whitney Barlow Robles has been chosen as the 2023 Tom Regan Research Fellow. Professor Robles has a Ph.D. in American Studies and an A.M. in History from Harvard University and a B.A. in American Studies (with a concentration in nature writing) from Yale University.

In addition to her extensive academic writing, she has also been a science editor for a global health laboratory at Caltech and a freelance science and nature writer. While working as a writer and editor at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, Professor Robles has done feature writing for general audiences about topics such as firefly sex, flavor perception, and terraforming Mars. (Photo: Katie Lenhart)

Professor Robles says:

I’m incredibly grateful to the Culture & Animals Foundation and the Special Collections Research Center at NC State for the chance to conduct research on my second book project as part of the Tom Regan FellowshipThe project builds on my first book, Curious Species: How Animals Made Natural History, which comes out with Yale University Press this fall and follows four animal protagonists, weaving back and forth between natural history’s development in the eighteenth century and the present day to show the enduring effects of animals on human knowledge systems. My second book, The Collector’s Paradox: Specimens, Species, and Loss, explores collecting’s contradictory relationship with both preservation and destruction. It’s particularly interested in the history of animal specimen collection over the past three centuries and how individual animals must be made into sacrificial artifacts in the name of conservation and scientific study. I am especially eager to use the expansive Animal Rights Archive at NC State to research the twentieth-century side of this story, and I’m honored to be doing so under the aegis of Tom Regan’s legacy.