'Animal Rights Looking back to Ancient Greek Philosophy from a Modern Stance'

Philosophy International Journal 1 (1):1-8 (2018)
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Abstract

Animals, the beautiful creatures of God in the Stoic and especially in Porphyry’s sense, need to be treated as rational. We know that the Stoics ask for justice for all rational beings, but I think there is no significant proclamation from their side that directly talks in favour of animal justice. They claim the rationality of animals but do not confer any right to human beings. The later Neo-Platonist philosopher Porphyry magnificently deciphers this idea in his writing On Abstinence from Animal Food. Aristotle’s successor Theophrastus thinks that both animals and humans are made up of the same tissues, and like humans, animals have the same perception, reasoning, and appetites. In this paper, I will attempt to show another empathetic ground that considers rational animals as friends or reincarnated relatives of human beings, as Aristotle, Pythagoras, and Theophrastus occasionally put forth in their writings. My next effort would be to decipher how Porphyry illustrates Theophratus’ perspective, not in the way (the technical theory of justice) the Stoics argued. Porphyry’s stance seems more humanistic, looking for the pertinent reasons for treating animal rights from the contention of justice that Aristotle defied since the animals can deal with reasons in his early writings. The paper highlights how much we could make justificatory demand the empathetic concern for animals from the outlook of the mentioned Greek thinkers and modern animal rights thinkers as quasi-right animals, even if my own position undertakes the empathetic ground for animals as an undeserving humanitarian way.

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References found in this work

Practical Ethics.Peter Singer - 1979 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Susan J. Armstrong & Richard George Botzler.
The Case for Animal Rights.Tom Regan - 2004 - Univ of California Press.
The Case for Animal Rights.Tom Regan - 1985 - Human Studies 8 (4):389-392.
Practical Ethics.Peter Singer - 1979 - Philosophy 56 (216):267-268.
All Animals Are Equal.Peter Singer - 1989 - In Tom Regan & Peter Singer (eds.), Animal Rights and Human Obligations. Oxford University Press. pp. 215--226.

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