Personhood and Animals

Environmental Ethics 30 (2):175-193 (2008)
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Abstract

A common Western assumption is that animals cannot be persons. Even in animal ethics, the concept of personhood is often avoided. At the same time, many in cognitive ethology argue that animals do have minds, and that animal ethics presents convincing arguments supporting the individual value of animals. Although “animal personhood” may seem to be an absurd notion, more attention needs to placed on the reasons why animals can or cannot be included in the category of persons. Of three different approaches to personhood—the perfectionist approach, the humanistic approach, and the interactive approach—the third approach is the strongest. Personhood defined via interaction opens new doors for animal ethics.

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Citations of this work

The Relevance (and Irrelevance) of Questions of Personhood (and Mindedness) to the Abortion Debate.David Kyle Johnson - 2019 - Socio-Historical Examination of Religion and Ministry 1 (2):121‒53.
How to do Animal Ethics.Tony Lynch & Lesley McLean - 2016 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 29 (4):597-606.
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References found in this work

Great Apes, Dolphins, and the Concept of Personhood.David DeGrazia - 1997 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 35 (3):301-320.
Environmental Justice.Peter S. Wenz - 1989 - Ethics 100 (1):197-198.
Empathy and animal ethics.Richard Holton & Rae Langton - 1998 - In Dale Jamieson (ed.), Singer and His Critics. Oxford University Press.
Science, knowledge, and animal minds.Dale Jamieson - 1998 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 98 (1):79–102.

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