Philosophical Studies 178 (4):1223-1243 (2021)

Angie Pepper
University of Roehampton
Richard Healey
University College London
In this article, we develop and defend an account of the normative significance of nonhuman animal agency. In particular, we examine how animals’ agency interests impact upon the moral permissibility of our interactions with them. First, we defend the claim that nonhuman animals sometimes have rights to self-determination. However, unlike typical adult humans, nonhuman animals cannot exercise this right through the giving or withholding of consent. This combination of claims generates a puzzle about the permissibility of our interactions with nonhuman animals. If animals sometimes have rights to self-determination, but lack the capacity to consent, then when, if ever, is it permissible for us to touch them, hold them, bathe them, or confine them? In the second half of the article, we develop a solution to this puzzle. We argue that while we cannot obtain animals’ consent, they can engage in authoritative communications of will through acts of “assent” and “dissent.”
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DOI 10.1007/s11098-020-01472-5
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References found in this work BETA

Principles of Biomedical Ethics.Tom L. Beauchamp - 1979 - Oxford University Press.
The Case for Animal Rights.Tom Regan - 2009 - In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Noûs. Oxford University Press. pp. 425-434.
The Case for Animal Rights.Tom Regan - 1983 - University of California Press, C1983.
The Morality of Freedom.Joseph Raz - 1986 - Philosophy 63 (243):119-122.

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Citations of this work BETA

Political Agency in Humans and Other Animals.Angie Pepper - 2021 - Contemporary Political Theory 20 (2):296-317.
Glass Panels and Peepholes: Nonhuman Animals and the Right to Privacy.Angie Pepper - 2020 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 101 (4):628-650.
Covid-19 and the Future of Zoos.Angie Pepper & Kristin Voigt - 2021 - Les Ateliers de l'Éthique / the Ethics Forum 16 (1):68-87.

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