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Philosophy

Between the Species

Consciousness

Publication Year

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Full-Text Articles in Arts and Humanities

Nonhuman Animals: Not Necessarily Saints Or Sinners, Cheryl E. Abbate Apr 2013

Nonhuman Animals: Not Necessarily Saints Or Sinners, Cheryl E. Abbate

Between the Species

Higher-order thought theories maintain that consciousness involves the having of higher-order thoughts about mental states. In response to these theories of consciousness, an attempt is often made to illustrate that nonhuman animals possess said consciousness, overlooking an alarming consequence: attributing higher-order thought to nonhuman animals might entail that they should be held morally accountable for their actions. I argue that moral responsibility requires more than higher-order thought: moral agency requires a specific higher-order thought which concerns a belief about the rightness or wrongness of affecting another’s mental states. This “moral thought” about the rightness or wrongness is not yet ...


On The Respectful Use Of Animals, Jon Garthoff Sep 2012

On The Respectful Use Of Animals, Jon Garthoff

Between the Species

In his essay “The Integration of the Ethic of the Respectful Use of Animals into the Law”, David Favre begins to articulate a new framework for understanding the legal status of nonhuman animals. The present essay supports the broad contours of Favre’s framework, but raises challenges for some of the framework’s elements. The first half questions Favre’s claim that possession of DNA and the capacity for life underlie the need for a more robust conception of animal legal standing. The second half questions Favre’s prior proposal that animals be deemed persons under law and questions his ...


Ethics, Law, And The Science Of Fish Welfare, Colin Allen Aug 2012

Ethics, Law, And The Science Of Fish Welfare, Colin Allen

Between the Species

Fish farming is one of the fastest growing sectors of agriculture, attracting considerable attention to the question of whether existing farming regulations and animal welfare laws are adequate to deal with the expanding role of fish in feeding humans. The role of fish as model organisms in scientific research is also expanding -- a majority of research biology departments now keep zebrafish for the purposes of genome biology, and they are used widely used for basic neuroscience research. However, due to their diversity and distance from mammalian biology, fish pose difficult questions for the application of legal and ethical principles of ...