Animal Rights -‘One-of-Us-ness’: From the Greek Philosophy towards a Modern Stance

Philsophy Internaltional Journal 1 (2):1-8 (2018)
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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 there is no significant proclamation from their side that openly talks in favour of animal justice. They claim the rationality of animals but do not confer any rights 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 a human, animals also have the same way of perception, reasoning and appetites. My next effort would be to decipher how Porphyry illustrates Theophrastus’ perspective not in the way (the technical theory of justice) the Stoics argued. Porphyry’s stance seems more humanistic that looks for the pertinent reasons for treating animal rights from the contention of justice that Aristotle, in his early writings, defied since animals can deal with reasons. The paper highlights how much we could justificatorily demand empathetic concern for animals from the outlook of the mentioned Greek thinkers and the modern animal rights thinkers as quasi-right of animals, even if my position undertakes the empathetic ground for animals in an undeserving humanitarian way.

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Dr Sanjit Chakraborty
Vellore Institute of Technology-AP University


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