Dog Fight: The Animal Experimentation Debate in 20th-Century Chicago
Exhibition Dates: May 8 to September 1, 2023
Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637
Content warning: This exhibition contains items that some visitors may find upsetting and/or objectionable. Topics discussed or depicted include animal experimentation and surgery. The curators acknowledge that this content may be difficult and encourage visitor discretion.
Chicago was a central battleground for debates over animal experimentation during the last century, and no animal was more controversial than the dog. In 1931, physiologists at the University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and other local medical schools secured the passage of the Arvey Ordinance, which allowed faculty to claim stray dogs from the city pound for experimental purposes. The measure became a lightning rod for antivivisectionists, led by Irene Castle McLaughlin, a celebrity dancer and colorful doyenne of Chicago society.
This exhibition brings together radio broadcasts, silent films, photographs, newspaper coverage, letters, pamphlets, and propaganda to present both sides of that controversy and how it continues to shape the way we think about biomedical ethics and the cost of scientific progress.
Brad Bolman, Postdoctoral Researcher, The Institute on the Formation of Knowledge, The University of Chicago
Zoë Lescaze, AM'22, journalist and independent researcher
Images and Media Contact
No photography or video recording is permitted in the gallery.
Images from the exhibition included on this page are available for download to members of the media and are reserved for editorial use in connection with University of Chicago Library exhibitions, programs, or related news. For more information, contact Rachel Rosenberg at firstname.lastname@example.org or 773-834-1519.