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'Utilitarianism for animals; deontology for people’ and The Doing/Allowing Distinction

'Utilitarianism for animals; deontology for people’ and The Doing/Allowing Distinction
'Utilitarianism for animals; deontology for people’ and The Doing/Allowing Distinction
It is tempting to think that zebras, goats, lions, and similar animals matter morally, but not in quite the same way people do. This might lead us to adopt a hybrid view of animal ethics such as ‘Utilitarianism for Animals; Deontology for People’. One of the core commitments of deontology is the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing (DDA): the view that doing harm is harder to justify than allowing harm. I explore how this core tenant of deontology applies to non-person, non-human animals and whether hybrid views of animal ethics can accept it. In doing so, I aim to do three things. First, to show that my defence of the DDA can solve a problem surrounding our duties to wild animals, while making only minimal claims about animal moral status. Second, to offer an argument that for many non-person, non-human animals, we should recognise deontological constraints on their treatment, but also see those constraints as importantly different from the constraints against doing harm to persons. Third, to get clearer on how we should understand Utilitarianism for Animals and Nozickian hybrid approaches to animal ethics.
Animal Ethics, Deontology, Doctrine of Doing and Allowing, Hybrid Approaches, Utilitarianism for Animals
0031-8116
Woollard, Fiona
c3caccc2-68c9-47c8-b2d3-9735d09f1679
Woollard, Fiona
c3caccc2-68c9-47c8-b2d3-9735d09f1679

Woollard, Fiona (2021) 'Utilitarianism for animals; deontology for people’ and The Doing/Allowing Distinction. Philosophical Studies. (doi:10.1007/s11098-021-01745-7).

Record type: Article

Abstract

It is tempting to think that zebras, goats, lions, and similar animals matter morally, but not in quite the same way people do. This might lead us to adopt a hybrid view of animal ethics such as ‘Utilitarianism for Animals; Deontology for People’. One of the core commitments of deontology is the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing (DDA): the view that doing harm is harder to justify than allowing harm. I explore how this core tenant of deontology applies to non-person, non-human animals and whether hybrid views of animal ethics can accept it. In doing so, I aim to do three things. First, to show that my defence of the DDA can solve a problem surrounding our duties to wild animals, while making only minimal claims about animal moral status. Second, to offer an argument that for many non-person, non-human animals, we should recognise deontological constraints on their treatment, but also see those constraints as importantly different from the constraints against doing harm to persons. Third, to get clearer on how we should understand Utilitarianism for Animals and Nozickian hybrid approaches to animal ethics.

Text
Woollard final Animals and the DDA - Accepted Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only until 27 September 2022.
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 27 September 2021
e-pub ahead of print date: 28 October 2021
Published date: 28 October 2021
Additional Information: Funding Information: This paper was presented at the Oxford Workshop on Utilitarian Approaches to Animal Ethics on 10th September 2019 and at the Seminar in Moral Philosophy at the University of Gothenburg 19th September 2020. I thank members of the audience at both events for their very useful questions in particular Thomas Sinclair and Anna Folland who provided critical commentaries. I thank Adam Lerner and an anonymous referee for very helpful comments on later drafts of the paper. Finally, I thank David Killoren, Roger Crisp, Richard Rowland, and Julian Savulescu for organising the original workshop. The paper was completed while on research leave as part of the BUMP: Better Understanding the Metaphysics of Pregnancy Project, funded by the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, under grant agreement number 679586. Publisher Copyright: © 2021, The Author(s).
Keywords: Animal Ethics, Deontology, Doctrine of Doing and Allowing, Hybrid Approaches, Utilitarianism for Animals

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 451869
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/451869
ISSN: 0031-8116
PURE UUID: e3bc3da3-30aa-4082-8153-5260c2abd001

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Date deposited: 02 Nov 2021 17:41
Last modified: 10 Jun 2022 16:36

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