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)
: In this article, Bailey analyzes the relationship between ethical vegetarianism (or the claim that ethical vegetarianism is morally right for all people) and white racism (the claim that white solipsistic and possibly white privileged ethical claims are imperialistically or insensitively universalized over less privileged human lives). This plays out in the dreaded comparison of animals with people of color and Jews as exemplified in the PETA campaign and the need for human identification (or solidarity) with animals in ethical vegetarianism. (...) To support the viability of ethical vegetarianism, Bailey resolves the dread of this comparison by locating ethical vegetarianism as a strategy of resistance to classist, racist, heterosexist, and colonialist systems of power that often rely on the assumptions of speciesism to ground these axes of oppression. The author carries out this argument to contextualize African American responses to animal welfarism and ethical vegetarianism. (shrink)
Alors que les phénoménologues prétendent avoir dépassé le solipsisme, la plupart n’ont en fait que repousser les frontières de l’intersubjectivité des individus humains aux individus des autres espèces. Pourtant, Husserl reconnaît l’existence d’une intersubjectivité interspécifique, c’est-à-dire d’une intersubjectivité dépassant les limites de l’espèce. Il va même jusqu’à affirmer qu’on comprend parfois mieux un animal familier qu’un humain étranger. Toutefois, même s’il admet que plusieurs animaux sont capables d’une vie de conscience subjective et qu’ils vivent dans un monde de sens partagé, (...) il ne les considère pas comme des « personnes » selon sa conception exigeante de la « personne » associée à la rationalité, à la maturité, la normalité et l’historicité. Reste qu’être une « personne », en son sens le plus primordial – et plus décisif puisque c’est celui sur lequel s’édifient des conceptions politiques,juridiques et éthiques – signifie simplement être le sujet d’un monde environnant, d’un monde commun et d’une existence biographique. Distinguer deux sens du concept de personne permet de reconnaître que les animaux ont part à la transcendantalité, qu’ils ne sont pas simplement en vie mais ont une vie à la fois biographique et communautaire, même s’ils ne sont pas en mesure de réfléchir à cette vie de conscience qui est la leur pour considérer leur place dans l’enchaînement des générations et pour adopter ce que Husserl appelle une « vocation ». La phénoménologie husserlienne des anomalies permet ainsi de reconnaître que les animaux ressortissent bien de la figure d’autrui, qu’ils sont des alter ego sujets d’une vie de conscience, et qu’à ce titre ils participent pleinement, comme les enfants, les fous et les étrangers, à la co-constitution du monde de l’esprit. (shrink)
Drawing upon Husserl and Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenological constitution of the Other through Einfülhung, I argue that the hierarchical distinction between higher and lower animals – which has been dismissed by Heidegger for being anthropocentric – must not be conceived as an objective distinction between “primitive” animals and “more evolved” ones, but rather corresponds to a phenomenological distinction between familiar and unfamiliar animals.
Christiane Bailey and Chloë Taylor (Editorial Introduction) Sue Donaldson (Stirring the Pot - A short play in six scenes) Ralph Acampora (La diversification de la recherche en éthique animale et en études animales) Eva Giraud (Veganism as Affirmative Biopolitics: Moving Towards a Posthumanist Ethics?) Leonard Lawlor (The Flipside of Violence, or Beyond the Thought of Good Enough) Kelly Struthers Montford (The “Present Referent”: Nonhuman Animal Sacrifice and the Constitution of Dominant Albertan Identity) James Stanescu (Beyond Biopolitics: Animal Studies, Factory Farms, (...) and the Advent of Deading Life) Ian Werkheiser (Domination and Consumption: An Examination of Veganism, Anarchism, and Ecofeminism) Cynthia Willett (Water and Wing Give Wonder: Trans-Species Cosmopolitanism) Corey Lee Wrenn (Nonhuman Animal Rights, Alternative Food Systems, and the Non-Profit Industrial Complex) Emily R. Douglas (Eat or Be Eaten: A Feminist Phenomenology of Women as Food) Gary Steiner’s Animals and the Limits of Postmodernism (New York: Columbia University Press, 2013) Chloë Taylor (“Postmodern” Critical Animal Theory: A Defense) Patrick Llored (La déconstruction derridienne peut-elle fonder une communauté politique et morale entre vivants humains et non humains?) Jan Dutkiewicz (“Postmodernism,” Politics, and Pigs) Gary Steiner (Response to Commentators). (shrink)
: The achievements of Anna Julia Cooper are extraordinary given her life circumstances. Driven by a desire Cooper called "a thumping within," she became a prominent educator, earned her Ph.D., and influenced the thought of W.E.B. DuBois and others. Cooper fought for her educational philosophy, but despite her contributions, her apparent elitism has shaped contemporary assessments of her work. I argue that her views must be considered in social and historical context.
: Despite the fact that feminists have compellingly drawn connections between traditional notions of reason and the oppression of women and nature, many animal ethicists fail to deeply incorporate these insights. After detailing the links between reason and the oppression of women and animals, I argue that the work of philosophers such as Tom Regan and Peter Singer fails to reflect that what feminists have called is not the mere inclusion of emotion, but a recognition of the inherent continuity between (...) the two. To ignore this continuity, I conclude, risks reinscribing the very suffering we seek to eliminate. (shrink)
Despite the fact that feminists have compellingly drawn connections between traditional notions of reason and the oppression of women and nature, many animal ethicists fail to deeply incorporate these insights. After detailing the links between reason and the oppression of women and animals, I argue that the work of philosophers such as Tom Regan and Peter Singer fails to reflect that what feminists have called is not the mere inclusion of emotion, but a recognition of the inherent continuity between the (...) two. To ignore this continuity, I conclude, risks reinscribing the very suffering we seek to eliminate. (shrink)
If there actually is a third wave of feminism, it is too close to the second wave for its definition to be clear and uncontroversial, a fact which emphasizes the political nature of declaring the existence of this third wave. Through an examination of some third wave literature, a case is made for emphasizing the continuity of the second and third waves without blurring the differences between older and younger feminists.
La déconstruction heideggérienne de l’animalité qui a lieu dans les Concepts fondamentaux de la métaphysique va jusqu’à faire disparaître l’idée même d’une vie animale , d’une vie propre aux animaux. La vie, comme le disait déjà Heidegger dans Être et temps , est « un mode d’être propre », ce qui veut dire, comme le confirmera le cours de 1929-1930, que la vie est « le mode d’être de l’animal et de la plante ». D’emblée conçus comme « organismes », (...) les animaux se retrouvent désormais privés de monde, plongés dans une torpeur végétative, dans une Benommenheit , du fond de laquelle ils ne font, comme les végétaux, « rien de plus que vivre ». La méthode de l’ontologie de la vie -- annoncée dans Sein und Zeit comme une « interprétation privative » -- se révèle être une réduction au biologique : la stratégie consiste à trouver des équivalences fonctionnelles pour tout ce qui a trait chez les animaux à quelque chose comme une vie, à quelque chose comme une existence biographique, pour ne leur laisser que la vie, au sens strictement biologique du terme. Du se-mouvoir jusqu’à la perception en passant par cette forme de désir irrationnel qu’est l’impulsion, les traditionnelles facultés animales seront instituées en propre de l’homme, ne laissant plus aux animaux qu’une forme de vie organique, hors sens, hors possible, hors monde. (shrink)
The destruction of animality that takes place in Heidegger’s Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics goes as far as to destroy the very idea of an animal life as distinct from plant life. “Life”, as Heidegger says in Being and Time, is “a specific mode of being”, that is to say, as the 1929-30 lecture course will show, that it is “the mode of being of animals and plants”. Conceived as a mere organism that does “nothing more than to live”, the animal (...) find itself deprived of world, living in a vegetative state, in a kind of stupor (Benommenheit). The method of the ontology of life – announced in Being and Time as a “privative interpretation” – will reveal itself as a biological reduction: the strategy is to find functional equivalences for all that, in animals, resemble in any way what we find in humans. The life of animals is not a life, but biological processes. The traditional faculties associated with animal life – movement, perception and irrational desire (i.e. impulsion) – will be held as properly human, letting the animals a form of life deprived of signification, of possibility, of world. (shrink)
In this article, Bailey analyzes the relationship between ethical vegetarianism and white racism. This plays out in the dreaded comparison of animals with people of color and Jews as exemplified in the PETA campaign and the need for human identification with animals in ethical vegetarianism. To support the viability of ethical vegetarianism, Bailey resolves the dread of this comparison by locating ethical vegetarianism as a strategy of resistance to classist, racist, heterosexist, and colonialist systems of power that often rely on (...) the assumptions of speciesism to ground these axes of oppression. The author carries out this argument to contextualize African American responses to animal welfarism and ethical vegetarianism. (shrink)
In discussions of animal ethics, hypothetical scenarios are often used to try to force the clarification of intuitions about the relative value of human and animal life. Tom Regan requests, for example, that we imagine a man and a dog adrift in a lifeboat while Peter Singer explains why the life of one's child ought to be preferred to that of the family dog in the event of a house fire. I argue that such scenarios are not the usefully abstract (...) analytic tools they purport to be, but indirectly reinforce assumptions that are not only anthropocentric, but also tied to racist, sexist and ethnocentric stereotypes. An analysis of some of the cultural and ethical associations of the notion of self-sacrifice proves especially useful in revealing some of the limitations of certain popular Western approaches to animal ethics. (shrink)
Hamilton's principle and Hamilton's law are discussed. Hamilton's law is then applied to achieve direct solutions to time-dependent, nonconservative, initial value problems without the use of the theory of differential or integral equations. A major question has always plagued competent investigators who use “energy methods,” viz., “Why is it that one can derive the differential equations for a system from Hamilton's principle and then solve these equations (at least in principle) subject to applicable initial and boundary conditions; but one cannot (...) obtain a solution directly from Hamilton's principle except in very special cases?” This paper provides the answer to that question. In Hamilton's own words, “... the peculiar combination it [i.e., Hamilton's law] involves, of the principles of variations with those of partial differentials, for the determination and use of an important class of integrals, may constitute, when it shall be matured by the future labors of mathematicians, a separate branch of analysis.”. (shrink)
The achievements of Anna Julia Cooper are extraordinary given her life circumstances. Driven by a desire Cooper called "a thumping within," she became a prominent educator, earned her Ph.D., and influenced the thought of W.E.B. DuBois and others. Cooper fought for her educational philosophy, but despite her contributions, her apparent elitism has shaped contemporary assessments of her work. I argue that her views must be considered in social and historical context.
International agencies have contributed significantly to the promotion of capital-intensive fisheries development programs in many Third World nations. Activities of both bilateral and multilateral development assistance agencies are examined and shown to have certain common features, notably production-oriented programs typified by the introduction of powerful new fishing technologies, and the promotion of fishery exports as a means of increasing foreign exchange earnings. The argument is advanced that these programs have been largely detrimental to the best interests of recipient nations because (...) they have ignored both resource limitations and the distributional consequences of such development.Fisheries development programs in the Third World are seen as being shaped by a convergence of institutional and class interests between national and international agencies. The perspective of political economy is used to examine these interests and explain their relation to policy outcomes. Evidence is presented to show that international agencies have contributed to dualistic patterns of industry growth which have skewed development benefits towards a narrow urban elite. Rural small-scale fishers have been increasingly marginalized as a result of their inability to compete over a limited and, in some cases, depleted resource.Fisheries development and resource management need to be seen as complementary aspects of a single process rather than as separate activities. Central to fisheries management is the question of resource allocation between competing users. Suggestions are offered by which international development agencies can play an important role in encouraging resource use patterns which are both biologically sustainable and socially just. (shrink)
It has been recognized in the literature of the calculus of variations that the classical statement of the principle of least action (Hamilton's principle for conservative systems) is not strictly correct. Recently, mathematical proofs have been offered for what is claimed to be a more precise statement of Hamilton's principle for conservative systems. According to a widely publicized version of this more precise statement, the action integral for conservative systems is a minimum for discrete systems for small time intervals only (...) and is never minimum for continuous systems. In this paper, two contradictions to this “more precise” statement are demonstrated, one for a discrete system and one for a continuous system. (shrink)
According to history texts, philosophers searched for a unifying natural law whereby natural phenomena and numbers are related. More than 2300 years ago, Aristotle postulated that nature requires minimum energy. More than 220 years ago, Euler applied the minimum energy postulate. More than 200 years ago, Lagrange provided a mathematical “proof” of the postulate for conservative systems. The resulting Principle of Least Action served only to derive the differential equations of motion of a conservative system. Then, 170 years ago, Hamilton (...) presented what he claimed to be a “general method in dynamics.” Hamilton's resulting “Law of Varying Action” was supposed to apply to both conservative and non-conservative systems and was supposed to yield either the differential equations of motion or the integrals of those differential equations. However, no direct evaluation of the integrals of motion ever resulted from Hamilton's law of varying action. In 1975, a scant 29 years ago, following five years of controversy with engineer mechanicians, Dr. Wolfgang Yourgrau, Editor, Foundations of Physics, published my first paper based on Aristotle's postulate, without mathematical proof. That and subsequent papers present, through applications, a true “general method in dynamics.” In this essay, I present the mathematical proof that is missing from my 1975 and subsequent papers. Six fundamental integrals of analytical mechanics are derived from Aristotle's postulate. First, however, Hamilton must be revisited to show why his H function and his “force function” prevents the law of varying action from being the general method in dynamics that he claimed it to be. I have found that Hamilton’s Law of Varying Action (HLVA), as Hamilton presented it, cannot be applied to systems for which the force function is non-integrable. In 1972, Dr. B.E. Gatewood and Dr. D.P. Beres (then a graduate student) discovered that the end-point term associated with the principle of least action does not vanish. I named the new equation, “the general energy equation.” In 1973, because I was doing with it what Hamilton claimed could be done with HLVA, I simply assumed that this new equation was HLVA. I gave the new equation the misnomer HLVA. In 2001, I learned that I had made a grave mistake. I found that HLVA is at most a special case of the general energy equation. My interpretation of Aristotle's postulate permits one to by-pass the differential equations of motion completely for both conservative and non-conservative systems (no calculus of variations). (shrink)