Bees and Beekeeping from the Perspective of the Ontological Turn

Monika Kropej Telban



With a particular emphasis on the perspective of the human-animal relationship, the author presents forms of beekeeping as well as related narrative culture and painted beehive panels, which came into vogue in the second half of the 18th century, decorat- ing Slovenian apiaries. This practice was unique in Europe but was largely abandoned by the first decades of the 20th century due to changing economic, social, and spiritual conditions. While apiculture and the industry involving bee products have become very profitable worldwide, in Slovenia beekeeping is also perceived as a true national symbol. Beekeeping has also found its place in larger cities, mainly on terraces and in parks. In contrast, however, the often harmful human intervention has also accidentally exterminated bees in many natural habitats. The author discusses the relationship between man and bees in the light of posthumanism, which has revolutionized the way scholars perceive non-human mental lives and abilities.


bees; folklore; narrative culture; ontological turn; posthumanism; beehive panels

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