Animal Selves and the Good
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CitationKorsgaard, Christine M. 2018. "Animal Selves and the Good." In Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics 8, ed. Mark C. Timmons. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
AbstractIf we would save a human in preference to some other kind of animal, does that show that we must think humans are more important or valuable than the other animals? If everything that is important must be important to someone, and everything that is good must be good for someone, it makes almost no sense to say that humans are more important than the other animals. This paper constructs and defends a theory of the good that reflects the idea that everything that is good must be good for someone, in particular that everything that is good must be good from the point of view of a self. But the extent to which an animal has a unified self or identity is a matter of degree, and that makes the extent to which things may be good or bad for animals a matter of degree: some things may be both better and worse for animals with more unified and substantial selves. This may explain our intuitions about cases in which we would give the preference to people or the higher animals without invoking the absurd idea that some animals are more important than others.
Citable link to this pagehttps://nrs.harvard.edu/URN-3:HUL.INSTREPOS:37366788
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