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Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

Post-Darwin Skepticism And Run-Of-The-Mill Suicide, John Hadley Jan 2018

Post-Darwin Skepticism And Run-Of-The-Mill Suicide, John Hadley

Animal Sentience

Peña-Guzmán’s depiction of the opponent of animal suicide as a conservative is a straw man. It is possible to accept that animals are self-conscious and reflexive yet still reject the view that they have the mental wherewithal to commit run-of-the-mill suicide. That animal behaviour can be positioned on a continuum of self-destructive behaviour does not establish that animals can intentionally kill themselves.


Animals Aren’T Persons, But Is It Time For A Neologism?, Helen Steward Dec 2016

Animals Aren’T Persons, But Is It Time For A Neologism?, Helen Steward

Animal Sentience

Mark Rowlands argues that at least some animals are persons, based on the idea that (i) many animals have a property he calls “pre-reflective awareness,” (ii) the capacity for pre-reflective awareness is sufficient to satisfy the traditional Lockean definition of personhood, and (iii) satisfaction of the traditional Lockean definition of personhood is sufficient for being a person. I agree with (i) and can see that there is a persuasive case for (ii), but I think the case against (iii) blocks the conclusion that animals are persons. I suggest that we may need instead to coin a neologism in order to ...


Unconscious Higher-Order Thoughts (Hots) As Pre-Reflective Self-Awareness?, Rocco J. Gennaro Nov 2016

Unconscious Higher-Order Thoughts (Hots) As Pre-Reflective Self-Awareness?, Rocco J. Gennaro

Animal Sentience

Rowlands argues that many nonhuman animals are “persons,” contrary to the prevailing orthodoxy which rests on a mistaken conception of the kind of self-awareness relevant to personhood. He argues that self-awareness bifurcates into two importantly different forms — reflective self-awareness and pre-reflective self-awareness — and that many animals can have the latter, which is sufficient for personhood. I agree that there is good reason to think that many animals can have pre-reflective self-awareness, but I think Rowlands is mistaken about its nature. His account runs the risk of leading to an infinite regress objection, and his notion of pre-reflective self-awareness actually sounds ...


Are Animals Persons?, Mark Rowlands Jul 2016

Are Animals Persons?, Mark Rowlands

Animal Sentience

It is orthodox to suppose that very few, if any, nonhuman animals are persons. The category “person” is restricted to self-aware creatures: humans (above a certain age) and possibly some of the great apes and cetaceans. I argue that this orthodoxy should be rejected, because it rests on a mistaken conception of the kind of self-awareness relevant to personhood. Replacing this with a sense of self-awareness that is relevant requires us to accept that personhood is much more widely distributed through the animal kingdom.


Hsisp Annotated Bibliography: Moral & Character Education (1998-2013), Erich Yahner Sep 2014

Hsisp Annotated Bibliography: Moral & Character Education (1998-2013), Erich Yahner

Erich Yahner

No abstract provided.


Animal Pleasure And Its Moral Significance, Jonathan Balcombe Jun 2014

Animal Pleasure And Its Moral Significance, Jonathan Balcombe

Jonathan Balcombe, PhD

This paper presents arguments for, and evidence in support of, the important role of pleasure in animals’ lives, and outlines its considerable significance to humankind’s relationship to other animals. In the realms of animal sentience, almost all scholarly discussion revolves around its negative aspects: pain, stress, distress, and suffering. By contrast, the positive aspects of sentience – rewards and pleasures – have been rarely broached by scientists. Yet, evolutionary principles predict that animals, like humans, are motivated to seek rewards, and not merely to avoid pain and suffering. Natural selection favours behaviours that enhance survival and procreation. In the conscious, sentient ...