Animal Ethics and the Autonomous Animal Self (The Palgrave by Natalie Thomas

By Natalie Thomas

This ebook offers a thorough and intuitive argument opposed to the concept that intentional motion, supplier and autonomy are good points belonging simply to people. utilizing proof from learn into the minds of non-human animals, it explores the ways that animals may be understood as people who are conscious of themselves, and the resultant foundation of our ethical duties in the direction of them.

the 1st a part of this booklet argues for a perception of enterprise in animals that admits to levels between contributors and throughout species. It explores self-awareness and its numerous degrees of complexity which rely on an animals’ different psychological capacities. the writer deals an summary of a few tested theories in animal ethics together with these of Peter Singer, Tom Regan, Bernard Rollin and Lori Gruen, and the methods those theories serve to increase ethical attention in the direction of animals in line with a variety of capacities that either animals and people have in universal. The e-book concludes by means of not easy conventional Kantian notions of rationality and what it potential to be an self sustaining person, and discussing the issues that also stay within the research of animal ethics.

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Additional info for Animal Ethics and the Autonomous Animal Self (The Palgrave Macmillan Animal Ethics Series)

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However, he argues that animals are moral subjects as they can be motivated to act by moral considerations, and these considerations take the form of morally laden emotions such as sympathy, compassion, tolerance, patience, indifference, anger, malice, and spite.  34–35). As these can be considered reasons for acting and not merely causes for acting, he believes they provide the element of normativity needed to properly call some animals moral subjects. To make his argument, Rowlands argues that emotion, in the sense that is relevant to moral subjectivity, is identifiable with intentional states that have both descriptive and prescriptive content.

Toronto: Oxford University Press. 3 Self-Awareness and Selfhood in Animals Introduction Self-awareness is an important feature of agency, as it allows one to be aware of one’s own beliefs, desires, and preferences, even if only in a minimal sense. Perhaps most importantly, self-awareness allows one to have preferences, which can determine one’s choices among various options for acting. This further relates to autonomy, as we value the freedom to make our own choices, good or bad, as a result of what we value.

This view holds that when we ascribe “human” traits or characteristics to animals we are generally not justified in doing so. It may indeed be the case that anthropomorphizing can lead to improper or inaccurate ascriptions or claims about the explanations of animal behaviours, and this can in itself be harmful to animals. It could also be argued that we ought not to ascribe complex cognitive abilities to animals if we are able to explain their behaviours 26 Animal Ethics and the Autonomous Animal Self in non-mentalistic terms, similar to the psychological behaviourism approach to studying minds.

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