From human rights to sentient rights

Abstract
This article calls for a paradigm shift in the language, theory and practice of human rights: it calls for human rights to be reconceptualized as sentient rights. It argues that human rights are not qualitatively distinct from the basic entitlements of other sentient creatures, and that attempts to differentiate human rights by appealing to something distinctive about humanity, their unique political function or their universality ultimately fail. Finally, the article claims that moving to sentient rights will not lead to intractable conflicts between rights, but to a more inclusive, fair and rationally defensible normative enterprise
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Robin Attfield (1981). The Good of Trees. Journal of Value Inquiry 15 (1):35-54.

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