Mark Rowlands argues that, contrary to the dominant view, a Rawlsian theory of justice can legitimately be applied to animals. One of the implications of doing so, Rowlands argues, is an end to animalexperimentation. I will argue, contrary to Rowlands, that under a Rawlsian theory there may be some circumstances where it is justifiable to use animals as experimental test subjects (where the individual animals are benefited by the experiments).
Millions of animals are used every year in oftentimes extremely painful and distressing scientific procedures. Legislation of animalexperimentation in modern societies is based on the supposition that this is ethically acceptable when certain more or less defined formal (e.g. logistical, technical) demands and ethical principles are met. The main parameters in this context correspond to the “3Rs” concept as defined by Russel and Burch in 1959, i.e. that all efforts to replace, reduce and refine experiments must be (...) undertaken. The licensing of animal experiments normally requires an ethical evaluation process, oftentimes undertaken by ethics committees. The serious problems in putting this idea into practice include inter alia unclear conditions and standards for ethical decisions, insufficient management of experiments undertaken for specific (e.g. regulatory) purposes, and conflicts of interest of ethics committees’ members. (shrink)
Many people involved in the life sciences and related fields and industries routinely cause mice, rats, dogs, cats, primates and other non-human animals to experience pain, suffering, and an early death, harming these animals greatly and not for their own benefit. Harms, however, require moral justification, reasons that pass critical scrutiny. Animal experimenters and dissectors might suspect that strong moral justification has been given for this kind of treatment of animals. I survey some recent attempts to provide such a (...) justification and show that they do not succeed: they provide no rational defense of animalexperimentation and related activities. Thus, the need for a rational defense of animalexperimentation remains. (shrink)
The ethical treatment of animals has become an issue of serious moral concern. Many people are challenging long-held assumptions about animals and raising questions about their status and their treatment. What is the relationship between humans and animals? Do animals have moral standing? Do we have direct or indirect duties to animals? Does human benefit always outweigh animal suffering? The use of animals for experimentation raises all of these questions in a particularly insistent way. Donna Yarri offers an (...) overview of the current state of the discussion, and presents an argument for significantly restricted animalexperimentation. She points to the important similarities between humans and animals, arguing that the actual differences are differences of degree rather than kind. For that reason, she says, we must rethink our use of animals in experimentation. Animal cognition and animal sentiency together are the basis for the argument that experimental animals do have rights, which Yarri here enumerates. Christian theology, she shows, supports the existence of animal rights and contains additional resources within which a more humane animalexperimentation can be worked out. Animalexperimentation is not completely ruled out, and Yarri provides a model for what benign experimentation would look like. She concludes with a concrete burden-benefit analysis that can serve as the foundation for informed decision-making. (shrink)
Frey sets the challenge for the other authors: to explain why, morally, no humans can be subject to the kinds of experiments that animals are subject to and to explain how researchers can reliablyuse animal models to understand and cure human disease. He thinks that the first challenge has not been met; the second challenge is, unfortunately, not directly addressed in this book. Adrian Morrison states that he “abhors” positions like Frey’s, Peter Singer’s and Tom Regan’s. He asserts that (...) all “human beings stand apart in a moral sense from all other species” (51) and that all are worthy of “special consideration” (50). Regrettably he fails to defend his view by identifying the morally-relevant characteristics that all humans (even those with less intelligence, sentience and autonomy than animals) possess and all animals lack that might make his claim true. That omission prevents him from rationally criticizing opposing views. (shrink)
Claude Bernard, the father of scientific physiology, believed that if medicine was to become truly scientiifc, it would have to be based on rigorous and controlled animal experiments. Bernard instituted a paradigm which has shaped physiological practice for most of the twentieth century. ln this paper we examine how Bernards commitment to hypothetico-deductivism and determinism led to (a) his rejection of the theory of evolution; (b) his minima/ization of the role of clinical medicine and epidemiological studies; and (c) his (...) conclusion that experiments on nonhuman animals were, "entirely conclusive for the toxicology and hygiene of man". We examine some negative consequences of Bernardianism for twentieth century medicine, and argue that physio/ogy's continued adherence to Bernardianism has caused it to diverge from the other biological sciences which have become increasingly infused with evolutionary theory. (shrink)
The theory of evolution has beenused in arguments regarding animalexperimentation. Two such arguments areanalyzed, one against and one in favor. Eachargument stresses the relevance of the theoryof evolution to normative ethics but attemptsexplicitly to avoid the so-called naturalisticfallacy.According to the argument against animalexperimentation, the theory of evolution`undermines' the idea of a special humandignity and supports `moral individualism'. Thelatter view implies that if it is wrong to usehumans in experiments, then it is also wrong touse animals, unless there are relevantdifferences between (...) them that justify adifference in treatment. No such differencescan be found with regard to animals which lead`biographical lives'.The argument in favor of animal experimentationis based on evolutionary psychology. It statesthat humans, as all social animals, arespeciesist by nature and stresses that thisshould be taken seriously in normative ethics.This does not mean that animal interests shouldnot be considered, only that vital humaninterests may outweigh them.In order to assess the arguments, one has totake a stand on certain more basic issues: `is'versus `ought', impartiality versus specialobligations, and feelings/intuitions versusreason. Given the author's own position withregard to these more basic considerations, theevolutionary argument in favor of animalexperimentation is judged to be more convincingthan the one against but not decisive. It isalso maintained that not all animal experimentsare acceptable. Which animal experiments areacceptable and which are not has to be decidedon a case-by-case basis. (shrink)
I come before you today at the invitation of your Colloquium Chair, Professor Claes Lundgren. It was his thought that a colloquium session devoted to some of the foundational questions, or presuppositions, of animal might prove interesting. Such an examination may have several aims. 1) It provides an opportunity to reflect on and review together a common activity that, in the perceptions of some concerned fellow citizens and in the history of the discipline of physiology, has had some highly (...) questionable periods and prima facie objectionable practices. 2) It allows us to become more articulate about what we do, that we may speak effectively on its behalf to our critics. 3) Similarly, it enables us to speak to the concerns of our students, both of medicine and of physiology, whom we may initiate into the uses of animals without clarifying to them our perceptions of those uses and their rationale and justification. 4) Finally, such a stock-taking may occasion our own self-evaluation of our practices, with a possible result being the improvement of those practices from a moral point of view. And I suppose that Professor Lundgren asked me to speak with some of those aims in mind. (shrink)
Animals have moral standing; that is, they have properties (including the ability to feel pain) that qualify them for the protections of morality. It follows from this that humans have moral obligations toward animals, and because rights are logically correlative to obligations, animals have rights.
"This book . . . is everything a philosophical tome should be: timely, important, factually informed, responsive to the scholarly literature, analytical, scrupulously fair, and rigorously, vigorously argued. It is, if I may say so, a model specimen of practical ethics." Keith Burgess-Jackson Ethics and the Environment).
It is common to argue that animalexperimentation is justified by its essential contribution to the advancement of medical science. But note that this argument actually contains two premises: an empirical claim that animalexperimentation is essential to the advancement of medical science and an ethical claim that if research is essential to the advancement of medical science, then it is justified. Both claims are open to challenge, but in the logic of the case, only one (...) of them needs to be shown false or moot in order to refute the argument. I argue that the ethical claim does not withstand scrutiny. In addition, the main so-called “alternatives” to animal research do not merit that label since they still involve the use of nonhuman animals. (shrink)
Animal research is a challenging issue for the animal advocate because of what, besides animal well-being, is considered to be at stake, namely, human health. This article seeks to vindicate the antivivisectionist position. The standard defense of animal research as promoting the overwhelming good of human health is refuted on both factual and logical, or normative-theoretical, grounds. The author then attempts to clinch the case by arguing that animal research violates a deontic principle. However, this (...) principle falls to counterexample. The author concludes, nevertheless, that the principle retains force as a presumption that the current state of affairs fails to overthrow. This does suggest, though, that the antivivisection movement would be well advised to keep ahead of the curve. The author proposes it do so by emulating the vegan movement against animal agriculture with the active promotion of alternatives to animal research. (shrink)
The experimental laboratory can be a horror house for rats, monkeys, and other nonhuman animals. Yet their use in this setting is usually reported in a routine manner in publications that discuss the results. These contentions are illustrated with an analysis of the way animal evidence is presented in David J. Linden’s recent book, The Accidental Mind: How Brain Evolution Has Given Us Love, Memory, Dreams, and God (Harvard University Press, 2007). The article concludes with a call to science (...) authors to acknowledge formally in their written work the ethical significance of such use of nonhuman animals. (shrink)
This book is the result of a three-year study undertaken by a multidisciplinary working party of the Institute of Medical Ethic (UK). The group was chaired by a moral theologian, and its members included biological and ethological scientists, toxicologists, physicians, veterinary surgeons, an expert in alternatives to animal use, officers of animal welfare organizations, a Home Office Inspector, philosophers, and a lawyer. Coming from these different backgrounds, and holding a diversity of moral views, the members produced the agreed (...) report as a result of detailed and rigorous discussions. The book sets out facts about animal experiments and about animal abilities to experience pain, distress and anxiety. There is a detailed examination of the moral claims related to the benefits likely to accrue from animal research, and of strategies for weighing these benefits against the harm caused to animals, in order to decide whether particular research projects ought or ought not to proceed. This leads to consideration of the statutory and non-statutory controls which safeguard standards in such research. The final section explores a variety of philosophical arguments about the use of animals in research, and offers a philosophical justification for the Working Party's more practical conclusions. Written in clear, nontechnical language, this book is accessible to lay people as well as to scientists. It is the first such document to emerge from a meeting of people with such widely differing views on this highly controversial subject, and represents a major contribution towards informing and raising the quality of contemporary debate. The book is unique in drawing together material and ideas never before found in one volume. It will interest a broad spectrum of readers, from ethicists and animal rights advocates to scientific researchers and laboratory administrators, along with general readers concerned about this compelling issue. (shrink)
Rosalind Hursthouse carefully introduces one of three standard approaches in current ethical theory: utilitarianism, rights, and virtue ethics. She then proceeds to clearly explain how each approach encourages us to think about our treatment of animals. Every chapter is linked to a reading from a key exponent of each approach. With readings from Singer, Regan and Midgley.
Este artigo analisa o uso de animais não-humanos sob três aspectos correlacionados: aspectos fatuais acerca do tratamento que nós, seres humanos, dispensamos aos outros animais, especialmente na experimentação animal; aspectos avaliativos sobre a ética desse tratamento; aspectos práticos sobre o que devemos fazer. Nos aspectos avaliativos analisamos argumentos éticos favoráveis e contrários ao uso de animais pela indústria da alimentação e da experimentação animal. Esta avaliação ética fundamenta os aspectos práticos com que concluímos o artigo, onde são feitas (...) sugestões de ações, em especial, a substituição da experimentação animal pela investigação com sujeitos não humanos de pesquisa. (shrink)
We argue that the recommendations made by the Institute of Medicine’s 2011 report, Chimpanzees in Biomedical and Behavioral Research: Assessing the Necessity, are methodologically and ethically confused. We argue that a proper understanding of evolution and complexity theory in terms of the science and ethics of using chimpanzees in biomedical research would have had led the committee to recommend not merely limiting but eliminating the use of chimpanzees in biomedical research. Specifically, we argue that a proper understanding of the difference (...) between the gross level of examination of species and examinations on finer levels can shed light on important methodological and ethical inconsistencies leading to ignorance of potentially unethical practices and policies regarding the use of animals in scientific research. (shrink)
In this paper, a mathematical model of the respiratory mechanics is used to reproduce experimental signal waveforms acquired from three newborn lambs. As the main challenge is to determine specific lamb parameters, a sensitivity analysis has been realized to find the most influent parameters, which are identified using an evolutionary algorithm. Results show a close match between experimental and simulated pressure and flow waveforms obtained during spontaneous ventilation and pleural pressure variations acquired during the application of positive pressure, since root (...) mean square errors equal to 0.0119, 0.0052 and 0.0094. The identified parameters were discussed in light of previous knowledge of respiratory mechanics in the newborn. (shrink)
The Animal Ethics Reader is the first comprehensive, state-of-the-art anthology of readings on this substantial area of study and interest. A subject that regularly captures the headlines, the book is designed to appeal to anyone interested in tracing the history of the subject, as well as providing a powerful insight into the debate as it has developed. The recent wealth of material published in this area has not, until now, been collected in one volume. Readings are arranged thematically, carefully (...) presenting a balanced representation of the subject as it stands. It will be essential reading for students taking a course in the subject as well as being of considerable interest to the general reader. Articles are arranged under the following headings: Theories of Animal Ethics; Animal Capacities; Animals for Food; AnimalExperimentation; Genetic Engineering of Animals; Ethics and Wildlife; Zoos, Aquaria, and Animals in Entertainment; Companion Animals; Legal Rights for Animals. Readings from leading experts in the field including Peter Singer, Mary Midgley and Bernard Rollin are featured as well as selections from Donald Griffin, Mark Bekoff, Jane Goodall, Raymond Frey, Barbara Orlans, Tom Regan, and Baird Callicott. There is an emphasis on balancing classic and contemporary readings with a view to presenting debates as they stand at this point in time. Each chapter is introduced by the editors and study questions feature at the end. The foreword has been written by Bernard Rollin. (shrink)
Utilitarianism, the ethical doctrine that holds in its most basic form that right actions are those that maximize pleasure and minimize pain, has been at the center of many of the ethical debates around animal welfare. The most well-known utilitarian of our time, Peter Singer, is widely credited with having sparked the animal welfare movement of the past 35+ years, using utilitarian reasoning to argue against using animals in invasive research that we aren’t willing to perform on humans. (...) Yet many people who have argued for the use of animals in invasive experimentation have also appealed to utilitarian ideas by claiming that insofar as lab animals suffer, the suffering is justified by greater benefits produced via the knowledge gained from research. In this paper, I will examine whether the classical utilitarian prescriptions “maximize pleasure” and “minimize pain” should be treated as equals by the theory and, if not, what the possible implications are for research involving nonhuman animals. -/- The idea that pain has a stronger influence than pleasure is accepted in much of the recent psychology literature on well-being. Some philosophers have also argued that minimizing suffering should play a more important role in ethical theorizing than maximizing pleasure. However, I will argue that neuroscience is uniquely positioned to provide definitive evidence that pleasure and pain are not merely two symmetrical poles of a single scale of experience, but in fact two different types of experiences altogether with dramatically different contributions to our wellbeing. I consider several different conceptions of symmetry, and argue that each is at odds with the most recent empirical results. (shrink)
The principle of gratuitous suffering -- The value of humans and the value of animals -- The holocaust of factory farming -- Hunting -- Animalexperimentation -- The law and animals -- Women and animals.
This timely and provocative book examines the theories behind the most commonly held contemporary assumptions about animal rights. Focusing on the writings of prominent pro-liberation activists such as Peter Singer, Tom Regan and Mary Midgley, Michael P. T. Leahy argues that the animal rights movement is based upon a series of fundamental misconceptions about the basic nature of animals--beliefs which define them rationally, emotionally, and morally in too human terms. Leahy gives particular emphasis to the writings of Ludwig (...) Wittgenstein and his highly influential philosophy of language, and concludes that much of our talk about animals is dangerously anthropomorphic and encourages us to elevate them to quasi-human status. He examines such crucial issues as animalexperimentation, the use of animals for food and fur, animals in captivity and vegetarianism. (shrink)
Over the last few years, the public has gradually become aware of the existence of a new cause: animal liberation. Most people first heard of the movement through newspaper articles, often of the "what on earth will they come up with next?" variety. Then there were marches and demonstrations against factory farming, animalexperimentation or the Canadian seal slaughter; all brought to an audience of millions by the TV cameras. Finally there have been the illegal acts: slogans (...) daubed on fur shops, laboratories broken into and animals rescued. What are the ideas behind the animal liberation movement, and where is it heading? In this essay I shall try to answer these questions. (shrink)
Welfare biology is the study of living things and their environment with respect to their welfare (defined as net happiness, or enjoyment minus suffering). Despite difficulties of ascertaining and measuring welfare and relevancy to normative issues, welfare biology is a positive science. Evolutionary economics and population dynamics are used to help answer basic questions in welfare biology: Which species are affective sentients capable of welfare? Do they enjoy positive or negative welfare? Can their welfare be dramatically increased? Under plausible axioms, (...) all conscious species are plastic and all plastic species are conscious (and, with a stronger axiom, capable of welfare). More complex niches favour the evolution of more rational species. Evolutionary economics also supports the common-sense view that individual sentients failing to survive to mate suffer negative welfare. A kind of God-made (or evolution-created) fairness between species is also unexpectedly found. The contrast between growth maximization (as may be favoured by natural selection), average welfare, and total welfare maximization is discussed. It is shown that welfare could be increased without even sacrificing numbers (at equilibrium). Since the long-term reduction in animal suffering depends on scientific advances, strict restrictions on animalexperimentation may be counter-productive to animal welfare. (shrink)
I argue that the equal rights views of Tom Regan and Evelyn B. Pluhar must be rejected because they have unacceptable consequences. My objection is similar to one made in the literature by Mary Anne Warren, but I develop it in more detail and defend it from several plausible responses that an equal rights theorist might make. I formulate a theory, a moderate form of perfectionism, that makes a valuedistinction between moral agents and moral patients according to which although both (...) have rights, these rights are not equal. This theory avoids the unacceptable consequences of the equal rights view and is immune to the marginal cases arguments that typical full-personhood theories succumb to. This moderate perfectionism generates an obligation for people to be vegetarians (in most cases) and to severely curtail animalexperimentation. (shrink)
Much of the public debate over laboratory animal use has focused on either the scientist's demand for absolute freedom of inquiry, or the abolitionist's demand for an end to animal use in science. Yet many recent proposals for reform seek instead to balance the interests of laboratory animals in avoiding harm against the interests of research beneficiaries in continued animal use. This essay is an analysis of the intermediate reform positions and their underlying ethical principles. Keywords: (...) class='Hi'>animal research, animalexperimentation, ethics CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
Merit review of scientific projects involving laboratory animals is a central issue in the current debate over the ethics of animalexperimentation. In this essay, I examine several conceptual, regulatory, and practical problems inherent in the merit review process. Contemporary challenges to the existing merit review system and suggestions for reform are also discussed. The essay concludes with comments on legal and political questions relevant to the future of merit assessment.
Background: The requirement that animals be used in research and testing in order to protect humans was formalized in the Nuremberg Code and subsequent national and international laws, codes, and declarations.DiscussionWe review the history of these requirements and contrast what was known via science about animal models then with what is known now. We further analyze the predictive value of animal models when used as test subjects for human response to drugs and disease. We explore the use of (...) animals for models in toxicity testing as an example of the problem with using animal models.SummaryWe conclude that the requirements for animal testing found in the Nuremberg Code were based on scientifically outdated principles, compromised by people with a vested interest in animalexperimentation, serve no useful function, increase the cost of drug development, and prevent otherwise safe and efficacious drugs and therapies from being implemented. (shrink)
The use of experimental animals, mostly rodents, in biomedical research and especially in oncology and immunology should be acknowledged with respect, recognizing the contribution of animalexperimentation in the fascinating scientific progress in these disciplines of research. It is an obligation of the investigator to justify the scientific and ethical aspects of each study requiring the use of animals. The international guiding principles for using animals in biomedical research are well defined and have been distributed worldwide by the (...) International Council for Laboratory Animal Science (ICLAS) since 1956, when this Organization was founded. In Poland the ICLAS philosophy and principles are highly respected and were implemented firstly by the members of the Commission on Biology of Experimental Animals appointed in 1962 by the Department of Medical Science of the Polish Academy of Science in Warsaw. Animal Protection Acts, first proclaimed in 1928 were gradually modified and improved. Actual legislation (enacted in 1997, 2003 and 2005) is consistent with EU Directives (86/609/EEC) and follows the internationally recommended principles that include ICLAS guidelines concerning animal welfare and care condition in biomedical research. The problem of “alternative methods” is briefly discussed. Dr. Donald Boisvert, CCAC — Canadian Council on Animal Care. (shrink)
The seminal 1993 article by LaFollette and Shanks “Animal Models in Biomedical Research: Some Epistemological Worries” introduced an influential taxonomy into the debate about the value of animalexperimentation. The distinction they made between hypothetical and causal analog models served to highlight a concern regarding extrapolating results obtained in animal models to human subjects, which endures today. Although their taxonomy has made a significant contribution to the field, we maintain that it is flawed, and instead, we (...) offer a new practice-oriented taxonomy of animal models as a means to allow philosophers, modelers, and other interested parties to discuss the epistemic merits and shortcomings, purpose, and predictive capacities of specific modeling practices. (shrink)
Most discussions on animalexperimentation refer to domesticated animals and regulations are tailored to this class of animals. However, wild animals are also used for research, e.g., in biological field research that is often directed to fundamental ecological-evolutionary questions or to conservation goals. There are several differences between domesticated and wild animals that are relevant for evaluation of the acceptability of animal experiments. Biological features of wild animals are often more critical as compared with domesticated animals because (...) of their survival effects. An important issue is what is called here ``natural suffering'''': the suffering from natural circumstances. Should this type of suffering be taken into account when suffering from experimentation is evaluated? As an answer, it is suggested that ``natural functioning'''' should be considered as an additional standard in the evaluation of wild animalexperimentation. Finally, two topics related to the ecological context are considered. Firstly, the often inevitable involvement of non-research animals in wild animalexperimentation, and secondly, the eco-centric approach to nature conservation. According to the latter position, animals are subordinated to ecosystems. All these aspects make the evaluation of wild animal experiments much more complex than experiments with domesticated animals. Preliminary scores are proposed to deal with these aspects. It is argued that this should not lead to a more complex governmental regulation, since an effective maintenance and control are hard to realize and one may loose the cooperation of researchers themselves. In addition, non-governmental professional organizations such as research societies and funding organizations play a pivotal role. (shrink)
Singer’s utilitarian and Regan’s deontological views must be rejected because: (1) they rely on criteria for moral standing that can only be known a priori and (2) if these criteria were successful, they’d be too restrictive. I hold that while mental properties may be sufficient for moral standing, they are not necessary. (3) Their criteria of moral standing do not unambiguously abrogate needless harm to animals. I defend a theory of biocentric individualism that upholds the principle of species egalitarianism while (...) at the same time recognizing that in certain cases, human needs must outweigh the needs of non-humans. On this view, moral consideration is not conferred only on beings that have human-like mental properties. Finally, it offers an unambiguous recommendation for the abolition of harmful animalexperimentation, factory farming, and killing animals for sport. (shrink)
It is a curious fact about mainstream discussions of animal rights that they are dominated by consequentialist defenses thereof, when consequentialism in general has been on the wane in other areas of moral philosophy. In this paper, I describe an alternative, non‐consequentialist ethical framework (combining Kantian and virtue‐ethical elements) and argue that it grants (conscious) animals more expansive rights than consequentialist proponents of animal rights typically grant. The cornerstone of this non‐consequentialist framework is the thought that the virtuous (...) agent is s/he who has the stable and dominating disposition to treat all conscious animals, including non‐human conscious animals, as ends and not mere means. (shrink)
This paper examines whether non-human animals have a moral right not to be experimented upon. It adopts a Razian conception of rights, whereby an individual possesses a right if an interest of that individual is sufficient to impose a duty on another. To ascertain whether animals have a right not to be experimented on, three interests are examined which might found such a right: the interest in not suffering, the interest in staying alive, and the interest in being free. It (...) is argued that while the first two of these interests are sufficient to ground animal rights against being killed and made to suffer by experiments, the interest in freedom does not ground a general animal right not to be used in experimentation. (shrink)
Philosophers have worried that research on animal mind-reading faces a “logical problem”: the difficulty of experimentally determining whether animals represent mental states (e.g. seeing) or merely the observable evidence for those states (e.g. line-of-gaze). The most impressive attempt to confront this problem has been mounted recently by Robert Lurz (2009, 2011). However, Lurz’ approach faces its own logical problem, revealing this challenge to be a special case of the more general problem of distal content. Moreover, participants in this debate (...) do not appear to agree on criteria for representation. As such, future debate on this question should either abandon the representational idiom or confront differences in underlying semantics. (shrink)
It has been argued that if an animal is psychologically like us, there may be more scientific reason to experiment upon it, but less moral justification to do so. Some scientists deny the existence of this dilemma, claiming that although there are scientifically valuable similarities between humans and animals that make experimentation worthwhile, humans are at the same time unique and fundamentally different. This latter response is, ironically, typical of pre-Darwinian beliefs in the relationship between human and non-human (...) animals. Another irony is that debate about such issues has facilitated the participation once more of philosophers in questions concerning experimental psychology: ironic because laboratory-oriented psychologists, especially since the turn of the last century, had been eager to establish the independence of their subject from any influence of philosophy and its investigative methods, as well as from any kind of anthropomorphism.In Britain, certainly more so than in the United States, ethical constraints have prevented the development of psychological research with animals along certain routes. By the 1980s British professional and academic societies had published codes of conduct and guidelines for their members, in part responding to public concern about the welfare of animals in the psychological laboratory. What led to the establishment of these codes and guidelines? This paper analyses the historical background against which professional concern for ethical cost in experimental animal psychology began to take shape, leading to the societies' open pronouncements of the 1980s. (shrink)
: A major shortcoming of the Animal Welfare Act is its exclusion of the species most-used in experimentation-rats, mice, and birds. Considerations of justice dictate that extension of the law to these three species is the morally right thing to do. A brief history of how these species came to be excluded from the laws protecting laboratory animals is also provided, as well as discussion of the implications and significance of expanding the law.
A study of the problem of animal souls as treated by Pierre Bayle in his article on Rorarius in the Dictionnaire. Early modern philosophers, if they rejected dualism, tended—as Bayle shows—to be driven either to materialism or to panpsychism.
Paper presented at the Heidegger Circle 2011. Although Aristotle’s influence on young Heidegger’s thought has been studied at length, such studies have almost exclusively focused on his interpretation of Aristotle’s ethics, physics and metaphysics. I will rather address Heidegger’s appropriation of Aristotle’s ontology of life. Focusing on recently published or recently translated courses of the mid 20’s (mainly SS 1924, WS 1925-26 and SS 1926), I hope to uncover an important aspect of young Heidegger’s thought left unconsidered: namely, that Dasein’s (...) existential structures – Befindlichkeit, Understanding and being-with-one-another through language – arose from his close reading of Aristotle’s ontology of life, of animal life. (shrink)
According to higher-order thought accounts of phenomenal consciousness it is unlikely that many non-human animals undergo phenomenally conscious experiences. Many people believe that this result would have deep and far-reaching consequences. More specifically, they believe that the absence of phenomenal consciousness from the rest of the animal kingdom must mark a radical and theoretically significant divide between ourselves and other animals, with important implications for comparative psychology. I shall argue that this belief is mistaken. Since phenomenal consciousness might be (...) almost epiphenomenal in its functioning within human cognition, its absence in animals may signify only relatively trivial differences in cognitive architecture. Our temptation to think otherwise arises partly as a side-effect of imaginative identification with animal experiences, and partly from mistaken beliefs concerning the aspects of common-sense psychology that carry the main explanatory burden, whether applied to humans or to non-human animals. (shrink)
In this paper we1 assess the potential for research on nonhuman animals to address questions about the phenomenology of painful experiences. Nociception, the basic capacity for sensing noxious stimuli, is widespread in the animal kingdom. Even rel- atively primitive animals such as leeches and sea slugs possess nociceptors, neurons that are functionally specialized for sensing noxious stimuli (Walters 1996). Vertebrate spinal cords play a sophisticated role in processing and modulating nociceptive signals, providing direct control of some motor responses to (...) noxious stimuli, and a basic capacity for Pavlovian and instrumental conditioning (Grau et al. 1990; Grau 2002). Higher brain systems provide additional layers of association, top-down control, and cognition. In humans, at least, these higher brain systems also give rise to the conscious experiences that are characteristic of pain. What can be said about the experiences of other animals who possess nervous systems that are similar but not identical to humans? (shrink)
Do non-human animals have rights? The answer to this question depends on whether animals have morally relevant mental properties. Mindreading is the human activity of ascribing mental states to other organisms. Current knowledge about the evolution and cognitive structure of mindreading indicates that human ascriptions of mental states to non-human animals are very inaccurate. The accuracy of human mindreading can be improved with the help of scientific studies of animal minds. But the scientific studies by themselves do not by (...) themselves solve the problem of how to map psychological similarities (and differences) between humans and animals onto a distinction between morally relevant and morally irrelevant mental properties. The current limitations of human mindreading – whether scientifically aided or not – have practical consequences for the rational justification of claims about which rights (if any) non-human animals should be accorded. (shrink)
This volume provides a general overview of the basic ethical and philosophical issues of animal rights. It asks questions such as: Do animals have moral rights? If so, what does this mean? What sorts of mental lives do animals have, and how should we understand welfare? By presenting models for understanding animals' moral status and rights, and examining their mental lives and welfare, David DeGrazia explores the implications for how we should treat animals in connection with our diet, zoos, (...) and research. Animal Rights distinguishes itself by combining intellectual rigor with accessibility, offering a distinct moral voice with a non-polemical tone. (shrink)
Zoos and animal rights seem utterly opposed to each other. In this controversial and timely book, Stephen Bostock argues that they can develop a more harmonious relationship. He examines the diverse ethical and technical issues involved, including human cruelty, human domination over animals, the well-being of wild animals outside their natural habitat, and the nature of wild and domestic animals. In his analysis, Bostock draws attention to the areas which give rise to misconceptions. This book explores the long history (...) of zoos, as well as current philosophical debates, to argue for a conservational view of their role in the modern world. Anyone concerned with humanity's relationship with other animals and the natural world will find this to be thought-provoking and rewarding reading. (shrink)
This book offers a powerful response to what Varner calls the "two dogmas of environmental ethics"--the assumptions that animal rights philosophies and anthropocentric views are each antithetical to sound environmental policy. Allowing that every living organism has interests which ought, other things being equal, to be protected, Varner contends that some interests take priority over others. He defends both a sentientist principle giving priority to the lives of organisms with conscious desires and an anthropocentric principle giving priority to (...) certain very inclusive interests which only humans have. He then shows that these principles not only comport with but provide significant support for environmental goals. (shrink)
The preceding article by Marc Bekoff reveals much about our current understanding of animal self-consciousness and its implications. It also reveals how much more there is to be said and considered. This response briefly examines animal self-consciousness from scientific, moral, and theological perspectives. As Bekoff emphasizes, self-consciousness is not one thing but many. Consequently, our moral relationship to animals is not simply one based on a graded hierarchy of abilities. Furthermore, the complexity of animal self-awareness can serve (...) as stimulus for thinking about issues of theodicy and soteriology in a broader sense. (shrink)
The publication of 'Animal Rights and Souls in the 18th Century' will be welcomed by everyone interested in the development of the modern animal liberation movement, as well as by those who simply want to savour the work of enlightenment thinkers pushing back the boundaries of both science and ethics. At last these long out-of-print texts are again available to be read and enjoyed - and what texts they are! Gems like Bougeant's witty reductio of the Christian view (...) of animals are included together with path-breaking works of ethics such as Primatt's A Dissertation on the Duty of Mercy and Sin of Cruelty to Brute Animals . There are works I have never seen before, including the remarkable Cry of Nature by the Scottish revolutionary Jacobin, John Oswald. In this set, everyone will find something novel, delightful and truly enlightening. - Peter Singer The discussion of animal rights and the moral status of animals, so prevalent in the late twentieth century, has its roots in the mid to late eighteenth century. Some of the themes we consider of recent invention - the legal standing of animals, the ethical status of vegetarians, cruelty towards animals, ultimately resulting in cruelty to humans - are of long standing. But in the eighteenth-century literature they are interconnected with theological issues surrounding animal souls, the birth of the life sciences, the great chain of being and other peculiarly eighteenth-century problems. This collection explores the exciting early discussions of moral theories concerning animals, placing them within their historical and social context. It reveals that issues such as vivisection, animal souls and vegetarianism were very much live philosophical subjects 200 years ago. The six volumes reprinted here includes complete works and edited extracts from such key eighteenth-century thinkers as Oswald, Primatt, Smellie, Monboddo and Jenyns. Many of the materials are extremely rare and never previously reprinted. The collection, edited with a new introduction and bio-bibliography by Aaron V. Garrett provides valuable original source material to supplement contemporary discussions of animal rights. --18th-century material on the theme of animal rights and practical ethics --an important supplement to contemporary animal rights discussions --provides a broader account of early discussions of the 'science of human nature' through animals --widens our understanding of 18th-century ethics through an important area of practical ethics --includes many scarce texts, most of which have never been reprinted before. (shrink)
It is sometimes said that simulation can serve as epistemic substitute for experimentation. Such a claim might be suggested by the fast-spreading use of computer simulation to investigate phenomena not accessible to experimentation (in astrophysics, ecology, economics, climatology, etc.). But what does that mean? The paper starts with a clarification of the terms of the issue and then focuses on two powerful arguments for the view that simulation and experimentation are ‘epistemically on a par’. One is based (...) on the claim that, in experimentation, no less than in simulation, it is not the system under study that is manipulated but a system that ‘stands-in’ for it. The other one highlights the pervasive use of models in experimentation. It will be argued that these arguments, as compelling as they might seem, are each based on a mistaken interpretation of experimentation and that, far from simulation and experimentation being epistemically on a par, they do not have the same epistemic function, do not produce the same kind of epistemic results. (shrink)
How much do animals matter--morally? Can we keep considering them as second class beings, to be used merely for our benefit? Or, should we offer them some form of moral egalitarianism? Inserting itself into the passionate debate over animal rights, this fascinating, provocative work by renowned scholar Paola Cavalieri advances a radical proposal: that we extend basic human rights to the nonhuman animals we currently treat as "things." Cavalieri first goes back in time, tracing the roots of the debate (...) from the 1970s, then explores not only the ethical but also the scientific viewpoints, examining the debate's precedents in mainstream Western philosophy. She considers the main proposals of reform that recently have been advanced within the framework of today's prevailing ethical perspectives. Are these proposals satisfying? Cavalieri says no, claiming that it is necessary to go beyond the traditional opposition between utilitarianism and Kantianism and focus on the question of fundamental moral protection. In the case of human beings, such protection is granted within the widely shared moral doctrine of universal human rights' theory. Cavalieri argues that if we examine closely this theory, we will discover that its very logic extends to nonhuman animals as beings who are owed basic moral and legal rights and that, as a result, human rights are not human after all. (shrink)
The end of human history is an event that has been foreseen or announced by both messianics and dialecticians. But who is the protagonist of that history that is coming—or has come—to a close? What is man? How did he come on the scene? And how has he maintained his privileged place as the master of, or first among, the animals? In The Open, contemporary Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben considers the ways in which the “human” has been thought of as (...) either a distinct and superior type of animal, or a kind of being that is essentially different from animal altogether. In an argument that ranges from ancient Greek, Christian, and Jewish texts to twentieth-century thinkers such as Heidegger, Benjamin, and Kojève, Agamben examines the ways in which the distinction between man and animal has been manufactured by the logical presuppositions of Western thought, and he investigates the profound implications that the man/animal distinction has had for disciplines as seemingly disparate as philosophy, law, anthropology, medicine, and politics. (shrink)
Problems of and explanations for evil -- Neo-cartesianism -- Animal suffering and the fall -- Nobility, flourishing, and immortality : animal pain and animal well-being -- Natural evil, nomic regularity, and animal suffering -- Chaos, order, and evolution -- Combining CDs.
Cass Sunstein and Martha Nussbaum bring together an all-star cast of contributors to explore the legal and political issues that underlie the campaign for animal rights and the opposition to it. Addressing ethical questions about ownership, protection against unjustified suffering, and the ability of animals to make their own choices free from human control, the authors offer numerous different perspectives on animal rights and animal welfare. They show that whatever one's ultimate conclusions, the relationship between human beings (...) and nonhuman animals is being fundamentally rethought. This book offers a state-of-the-art treatment of that rethinking. (shrink)
Biomedical experimentation on animals is justified, researchers say, because of its enormous benefits to human being. Sure an imals die a nd suffer , but that is m orally insignificant since the benefits of research incalculably outweigh the evils. Although this utilitarian claim appears straightforward and uncontroversial, it is neither straightforw ard n ot uncontroversial. This defense of animalexperimentation is like ly to succeed only by rejecting three widely held moral presumptions. W e identify those presumptions (...) and explain their relevance to the justification of animalexperimentation. We argue that even if non-human animals have con side rable less moral worth than humans, experimentation is justified only if its benefits are overwhelming. By building on arguments offered in earlier papers, we show that research ers c ann ot substantiate their claims of behalf of animal research. We conclude that there is currently no acceptable utilitarian defense of animalexperimentation. Moreover, it is unlikely that they could be one. Since most apologists of animalexperimentation rely on utilitarian justifications of their practice, it appears that biomedical experimentation on animals is not morally justified. (shrink)
Introduction: The role of animals in philosophies of man -- Part I: What's wrong with animal rights? -- The right to remain silent -- Part II: Animal pedagogy -- You are what you eat : Rousseau's cat -- Say the human responded : Herder's sheep -- Part III: Difference worthy of its name -- Hair of the dog : Derrida's and Rousseau's good taste -- Sexual difference, animal difference : Derrida's sexy silkworm -- Part IV: It's our (...) fault -- The beaver's struggle with species-being : De Beauvoir and the praying mantis -- Answering the call of nature : Lacan walking the dog -- Part V: Estranged kinship -- The abyss between humans and animals : Heidegger puts the bee in being -- Strange kinship : Merleau-Ponty's sensuous stickleback -- Stopping the anthropological machine : Agamben's tick-tocking tick -- Psychoanalysis and the science of kinship -- Psychoanalysis as animal by-product : Freud's zoophilia -- Animal abjects, maternal abjects : Kristeva's strays -- Conclusion: Sustainable ethics. (shrink)
This book focuses on experimentation that is carried out on human beings, including medical research, drug research and research undertaken in the social sciences. It discusses the ethics of such experimentation and asks the question: who defends the interests of these human subjects and ensures that they are not harmed? The author finds that ethical research depends on the adequacy of review by committee. Indeed most countries now rely on research ethics committees for the protection of the interests (...) of the human participants in research. Dr McNeill analyses how successful these committees are in balancing the interests of science with the interests of human subjects. (shrink)
Zoopolis offers a new agenda for the theory and practice of animal rights. Most animal rights theory focuses on the intrinsic capacities or interests of animals, and the moral status and moral rights that these intrinsic characteristics give rise to. Zoopolis shifts the debate from the realm of moral theory and applied ethics to the realm of political theory, focusing on the relational obligations that arise from the varied ways that animals relate to human societies and institutions. Building (...) on recent developments in the political theory of group-differentiated citizenship, Zoopolis introduces us to the genuine "political animal". It argues that different types of animals stand in different relationships to human political communities. Domesticated animals should be seen as full members of human-animal mixed communities, participating in the cooperative project of shared citizenship. Wilderness animals, by contrast, form their own sovereign communities entitled to protection against colonization, invasion, domination and other threats to self-determination. `Liminal' animals who are wild but live in the midst of human settlement (such as crows or raccoons) should be seen as "denizens", resident of our societies, but not fully included in rights and responsibilities of citizenship. To all of these animals we owe respect for their basic inviolable rights. But we inevitably and appropriately have very different relations with them, with different types of obligations. Humans and animals are inextricably bound in a complex web of relationships, and Zoopolis offers an original and profoundly affirmative vision of how to ground this complex web of relations on principles of justice and compassion. (shrink)
Introduction: Reason, ethics, and animals -- Part I: Making the rational case -- Why animal suffering matters morally -- How we minimize animal suffering and how we can change -- Part II: Three practical critiques -- First case: Hunting with dogs -- Second case: Fur farming -- Third case: Commercial sealing -- Conclusion: Re-establishing animals and children as a common cause and six objections considered.
Focus of animal welfare -- Agricultural sciences and animal welfare : crop production and animal production -- Veterinary science and animal welfare -- Genetics, biotechnology, and breeding : mixed blessings -- Animal welfare, grading compromise, and mitigating suffering -- Standardised behavioural testing in non-verbal humans and other animals -- Human-animal interactions and animal welfare -- Environmental enrichment : studying the nature of nurture -- Societal contexts of animal welfare -- Integrated perspectives : (...) sleep, developmental stage, and animal welfare -- The wider context of animal welfare science. (shrink)
This thought-provoking book will ask what it is to be human, what to be animal, and what are the natures of the relationships between them. This is accomplished with philosophical and ethical discussions, scientific evidence and dynamic theoretical approaches. Attitudes to Animals will also encourage us to think not only of our relationships to non-human animals, but also of those to other, human, animals. This book provides a foundation that the reader can use to make ethical choices about animals. (...) It will challenge readers to question their current views, attitudes and perspectives on animals, nature and development of the human-animal relationship. Human perspectives on the human-animal relationships reflect what we have learned, together with spoken and unspoken attitudes and assumptions, from our families, societies, media, education and employment. (shrink)
My commentary on Hurley is concerned with foundational issues. Hurley's investigation of animal cognition is cast within a particular framework—basically, a philosophically refined version of folk psychology. Her discussion has a complicated relationship to unresolved debates about the nature and status of folk psychology, especially debates about the extent to which folk psychological categories are aimed at picking out features of the causal organization of the mind.
Abstract McDowell's contributions to epistemology and philosophy of mind turn centrally on his defense of the Aristotelian concept of a ?rational animal?. I argue here that a clarification of how McDowell uses this concept can make more explicit his distance from Davidson regarding the nature of the minds of non-rational animals. Close examination of his responses to Davidson and to Dennett shows that McDowell is implicitly committed to avoiding the following ?false trichotomy?: that animals are not bearers of semantic (...) content at all, that they are bearers of content in the same sense we are, and that they are bearer of ?as if? content. Avoiding the false trichotomy requires that we understand non-rational animals as having concepts but not as making judgments. Furthermore, we need to supplement McDowell's distinction between the logical spaces of reasons and of the realm of law with what Finkelstein calls ?the logical space of animate life?. Though McDowell has taken some recent steps to embrace a view like this, I urge a more demanding conception than what McDowell has thus far suggested. (shrink)
General information -- The animals themselves -- Philosophical arguments -- Laws -- Political realities -- Social realities -- Education and the arts -- Contemporary sciences -- Major figures and organizations in the animal rights movement -- The future of animal rights.