Personhood, animals, and the law

Think 12 (34):25-32 (2013)

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ExtractThe idea that all the entities in the world may be, for legal and moral purposes, divided into the two categories of ‘persons’ and ‘things’ comes down to us from the tradition of Roman law. In the law, a ‘person’ is essentially the subject of rights and obligations, while a thing may be owned as property. In ethics, a person is an object of respect, to be valued for her own sake, and never to be used as a mere means to an end, while a thing has only a derivative value, and may be used as a means to some person's ends. This bifurcation is unfortunate because it seems to leave us with no alternative but to categorize everything as either a person or a thing. Yet some of the entities that give rise to the most vexing ethical problems are exactly the ones that do not seem to fit comfortably into either category. For various, different, kinds of reasons, it seems inappropriate to categorize a fetus, a non-human animal, the environment, or an object of great beauty, as a person, but neither does it seem right to say of such things that they are to be valued only as means.Send article to KindleTo send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply. Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.PERSONHOOD, ANIMALS, AND THE LAWVolume 12, Issue 34Christine M. KorsgaardDOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S1477175613000018Your Kindle email address Please provide your Kindle email.@free.kindle.com@kindle.com Available formats PDF Please select a format to send. By using this service, you agree that you will only keep articles for personal use, and will not openly distribute them via Dropbox, Google Drive or other file sharing services. Please confirm that you accept the terms of use. Cancel Send ×Send article to Dropbox To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox. PERSONHOOD, ANIMALS, AND THE LAWVolume 12, Issue 34Christine M. KorsgaardDOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S1477175613000018Available formats PDF Please select a format to send. By using this service, you agree that you will only keep articles for personal use, and will not openly distribute them via Dropbox, Google Drive or other file sharing services. Please confirm that you accept the terms of use. Cancel Send ×Send article to Google Drive To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive. PERSONHOOD, ANIMALS, AND THE LAWVolume 12, Issue 34Christine M. KorsgaardDOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S1477175613000018Available formats PDF Please select a format to send. By using this service, you agree that you will only keep articles for personal use, and will not openly distribute them via Dropbox, Google Drive or other file sharing services. Please confirm that you accept the terms of use. Cancel Send ×Export citation.
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DOI 10.1017/s1477175613000018
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