Non-violence towards animals in the thinking of Gandhi: The problem of animal husbandry [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 17 (3):223-248 (2004)
The question of the imperatives induced by the Gandhian concept of non-violence towards animals is an issue that has been neglected by specialists on the thinking of the Mahatma. The aim of this article is to highlight the systematic – and significant – character of this particular aspect of his views on non-violence. The first part introduces the theoretical foundations of the duty of non-violence towards animals in general. Gandhi's critical interpretation of cow-protection, advocated by Hinduism, leads to a general reflection on the duty of non-violence towards animals, the cow being transformed into the representative of all dumb creation. The approach adopted by Gandhi to solving the problem of cow-protection focuses on its practical dimensions and is based primarily on reforming animal husbandry. What limits should be imposed on the exploitation of farm animals within the framework of non-violence? Gandhi devoted nearly 30 years to elaborating an animal husbandry system that would be both economically viable and in conformity with the universal ethical principles he drew from religions (especially Hinduism). The interdiction to kill is absolute, since Gandhi not only rejects the breeding of farm animals for the purposes of butchery but also the slaughtering of animals that are no longer capable of providing the services required of them. He therefore concentrated his efforts on drawing up a scheme to reorganize this activity on a national scale while taking into consideration these constraints, which are less contradictory than they may seem to be at first sight. Reviewing the age-old activity of animal husbandry in the light of non-violence is clearly based on the specific nature of Hindu traditions. However, it goes far beyond cultural or religious relativism, since it is also founded on universal ethical principles.
|Keywords||ethics farm animals Gandhi non-violence|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Michiel Korthals (2012). Emotions, Truths and Meanings Regarding Cattle: Should We Eat Meat? [REVIEW] Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 25 (4):625-629.
Ryan P. McLaughlin (2012). Non-Violence and Nonhumans: Foundations for Animal Welfare in the Thought of Mohandas Gandhi and Albert Schweitzer. Journal of Religious Ethics 40 (4):678-704.
Similar books and articles
Dominick LaCapra (2009). History and its Limits: Human, Animal, Violence. Cornell University Press.
Jocelyne Porcher (2011). The Relationship Between Workers and Animals in the Pork Industry: A Shared Suffering. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 24 (1):3-17.
Vonne Lund & I. Anna S. Olsson (2006). Animal Agriculture: Symbiosis, Culture, or Ethical Conflict? [REVIEW] Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 19 (1):47-56.
Kelly Oliver (2010). Animal Ethics: Toward an Ethics of Responsiveness. Research in Phenomenology 40 (2):267-280.
Vonne Lund, Raymond Anthony & Helena Röcklinsberg (2004). The Ethical Contract as a Tool in Organic Animal Husbandry. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 17 (1):23-49.
Frank R. Ascione (2004). Children and Animals: Exploring the Roots of Kindness and Cruelty. Purdue University Press.
Douglas Allen (2007). Mahatma Gandhi on Violence and Peace Education. Philosophy East and West 57 (3):290-310.
John Webster (2005). Animal Welfare: Limping Towards Eden: A Practical Approach to Redressing the Problem of Our Dominion Over the Animals. Blackwell Pub..
Vinit Haksar (2012). Violence in a Spirit of Love: Gandhi and the Limits of Non-Violence. Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 15 (3):303-324.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads26 ( #143,114 of 1,790,408 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #203,023 of 1,790,408 )
How can I increase my downloads?