On a Failed Defense of Factory Farming

Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 30 (2):311-323 (2017)
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Abstract

Timothy Hsiao attempts to defend industrial animal farming by arguing that it is not inherently cruel. We raise three main objections to his defense. First, his argument rests on a misunderstanding of the nature of cruelty. Second, his conclusion, though technically true, is so weak as to be of virtually no moral significance or interest. Third, his contention that animals lack moral standing, and thus that mistreating them is wrong only insofar as it makes one more disposed to mistreat other humans, is untenable on both philosophical and biological grounds.

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Stephen Puryear
North Carolina State University

Citations of this work

Hsiao on the Moral Status of Animals: Two Simple Responses.Timothy Perrine - 2019 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 32 (5):927-933.
Varieties of the Cruelty-Based Objection to Factory Farming.Christopher Bobier - 2019 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 32 (3):377-390.

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References found in this work

The descent of man, and selection in relation to sex.Charles Darwin - 1898 - New York: Plume. Edited by Carl Zimmer.
On the origin of species.Charles Darwin - 2008 - New York: Oxford University Press. Edited by Gillian Beer.
Real Essentialism.David S. Oderberg - 2007 - New York: Routledge.
Can Animals Be Moral?Mark Rowlands - 2012 - New York, US: Oup Usa.

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