On “Finishing”: A Visual Memoir of Care and Death on an Irish Cattle Farm

Eimear Theresa Mc Loughlin*, John Casey

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


This visual memoir probes the tensions and contradictions that inflect the commodity-based relationship between a farmer and his cattle on an Irish farm. A methodological exploration of how to attend to the politics of care that animate multispecies relationships on the farm, this article examines relations of intimacy, care, and contradiction materialized in the structural manipulation of bodies for economic purposes. The attentive focus on the everyday encounters between John and his cattle unearths how affective and conflicting multispecies entanglements mediate the farming of animals for food through rhythms of care, the spirit of the gift, and the logic of sacrifice.
Original languageEnglish
JournalVisual Anthropology Review
Pages (from-to)34-59
Number of pages26
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • human-animal relationship
  • Killing Animals
  • Farming
  • participatory photography
  • Sacrifice
  • multimodal anthropology
  • auto-photography
  • human–animal relations
  • the good life
  • multispecies ethnography
  • human-animal relations


Dive into the research topics of 'On “Finishing”: A Visual Memoir of Care and Death on an Irish Cattle Farm'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this