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Life Sciences

Animal Sentience

Animal rights

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Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

Anthropocentrism: Practical Remedies Needed, Helen Kopnina Jan 2019

Anthropocentrism: Practical Remedies Needed, Helen Kopnina

Animal Sentience

It is true that one of the harmful consequences of creating categories where one group is unique and superior to others is that it justifies discriminating against the inferior groups. And outright abuse of nonhuman animals is indeed morally unjustifiable. But what is to be done about it?


Fish Sentience Denial: Muddy Moral Water, Robert C. Jones Jan 2018

Fish Sentience Denial: Muddy Moral Water, Robert C. Jones

Animal Sentience

Sneddon et al. (2018) authoritatively summarize the compelling and overwhelming evidence for fish sentience, while methodically dismantling one rather emblematic research paper (Diggles et al. 2017) intended to discount solid evidence of fish sentience (Lopez-Luna et al. 2017a, 2017b, 2017c, & 2017d). I explore the larger practical moral contexts within which these debates take place and argue that denials of animal sentience are really moral canards.


What If All Animals Are Sentient?, Arthur S. Reber Jan 2017

What If All Animals Are Sentient?, Arthur S. Reber

Animal Sentience

Birch develops a useful framework for determining when the Animal Sentience Precautionary Principle (ASPP) should be invoked. He rightly notes that there is a lack of agreement among social scientists, ethicists, and legislators even about whether the precautionary principle is useful, let alone when and how it should be implemented. His proposal is to establish a kind of cognitive threshold, and only when an animal shows a sufficient level of sentience would the ASPP be appropriate. From the point of view of the Cellular Basis of Consciousness model (Reber, 2016), all animals are sentient. If correct, the problems Birch identifies ...


What Do We Owe Animals As Persons?, Judith Benz-Schwarzburg Aug 2016

What Do We Owe Animals As Persons?, Judith Benz-Schwarzburg

Animal Sentience

Rowlands (2016) concentrates strictly on the metaphysical concept of person, but his notion of animal personhood bears a moral dimension (Monsó, 2016). His definition of pre-reflective self-awareness has a focus on sentience and on the lived body of a person as well as on her implicit awareness of her own goals. Interestingly, these also play a key role in animal welfare science, as well as in animal rights theories that value the interests of animals. Thus, Rowlands’s concept shows connectivity with both major fields of animal ethics. His metaphysical arguments might indeed contain a strong answer to the question ...


Linking Animal Ethics And Animal Welfare Science, Sue Donaldson, Will Kymlicka Jan 2016

Linking Animal Ethics And Animal Welfare Science, Sue Donaldson, Will Kymlicka

Animal Sentience

Broom (2014) argues that theories of animal ethics need to be better informed by the findings of animal welfare science. We agree, but argue that animal welfare science in turn may need to ask different questions. To date it has largely assumed that society will continue to treat domesticated animals as a caste group that exists to serve us, and that animal welfare is to be improved within that legal and political framework. We offer an alternative model of human-animal relations, and discuss what kind of animal welfare science it would require.