A Primordial Tool in the Training of Young Horses





work, horse, voice, skills training, affectivity


The role of voice in work relations with horses has been little studied. However, the results of the research we conducted into the professional training of young horses, shows that equestrians’ use of voice dominates training. Our results demonstrate a specific tessitura in the voices of the equestrians (from medium to medium-low), as well as a ternary rhythm in the voices of the most experienced among them. This results of our exploratory study confirm the interest of studying the role of voice in the construction of an interspecies tie between humans and horses, and the place of affectivity at work.


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Author Biographies

Jocelyne Porcher, INRAE

Jocelyne Porcher is a sociologist, research director, and leader of the Animals Lab team at the UMR Innovation (INRAE, National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment). Her research focuses on the working relationship between humans and animals. She is the author of a dozen books on the subject, including Animal Labor: A Collaborative Utopia (2017) and Animal Labor: A New Perspective on Human–Animal Relations (co-edited with Jean Estebanez, 2019). She takes a critical view of the industrialization of animal husbandry and constructs a theory of animal husbandry based on the sciences of work, in particular on the psychodynamics of work. With her team, she is interested in animal labour, i.e. the subjective investment of animals in work, and has published numerous articles on the subject. For the past ten years, she has also been developing critical work on the process of exclusion of domestic animals in industrial societies.

Sophie Barreau, Ecole Blondeau

Sophie Barreau oversees research at the École Blondeau, a renowned raining school for young horses and riders. She was a rider and a riding teacher before training in ethology and joining the Animals Lab research group, directed by Jocelyne Porcher. Her work focuses on the working relationship between humans and horses, including their professional training. She worked with Professor Matsuzawa at the Inuyama Primate Research Institute (Kyoto University) to observe the work of horses in a cognitive laboratory. Specifically, she taught ponies to use touch screens. For several years, she has been conducting research with the Animals Lab team to understand the subjective relationships of horses at work, and has published several articles on this subject with Jocelyne Porcher.

Nicolas Blondeau




How to Cite

Porcher, Jocelyne, and Sophie Barreau. 2023. “Voice: A Primordial Tool in the Training of Young Horses”. Humanimalia 13 (2):161–186. https://doi.org/10.52537/humanimalia.13273.