Which Beings Deserve Ethical Consideration? – From the Sentience Criterion to the Life Criterion

Utilitas 8 (02):191- (1996)
Abstract
There are a variety of arguments regarding which entities on earth have intrinsic value and therefore deserve ethical consideration. The thesis that only human beings have intrinsic value has waned considerably in recent years, mainly thanks to the efforts of animal liberationists. There now seems to be wide agreement that ethical consideration should be extended to entities beyond human beings. Disagreements are concerned with how far it should be extended: to animals with similar capacities to humans, to all sentient beings, or to all living beings, or even to the whole ecosystem?
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