- Hardcover: 272 pages
- Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (November 1, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0199842000
- ISBN-13: 978-0199842001
- Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 0.8 x 5.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,023,351 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Can Animals Be Moral? 1st Edition
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"Philosophers will appreciate the carefulness of Rowlands's arguments, the clarity of his writing, and his understated sense of humor."--Jessica Pierce, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews
"An excellent book, not only on what it is for animals to be moral, but what it is for humans to be moral, whether one agrees with the conclusions or not. In short, it is a book on what it is to be moral per se that challenges with skill and imagination goes-without-saying preconceptions of the moral and so deserves to be widely read."--John Shand, The Philosophical Quarterly
"This book makes an enormous contribution to an under-explored topic. It makes a novel and persuasive case that animals can be moral within certain limits, and lays the way for future philosophical and empirical enquiry."--Dr. Tom McClelland, Metapsychology
"Mark Rowlands is one of the rarest creatures today: a genuine intellectual, a fearless interrogator, and a frighteningly capable person who can who can turn his attention to practically any subject and provide insightful commentary.... Can Animals Be Moral? is a brilliant book, superbly written with wit and panache--it will be remembered as a classic."--Andrew Linzey, Director, Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics
"In his well-argued book that blends philosophical inquiry with empirical data, Mark Rowlands argues that animals can and sometimes do act for moral reasons. I couldn't agree more. People with varying interests will find this book to be a welcomed addition to their required reading list. Despite having been long interested in the moral lives of animals, I learned a lot from this wide-ranging book."--Marc Bekoff, University of Colorado, Boulder, author (with Jessica Pierce) of Wild Justice: The Moral Lives of Animals
"Rowlands carves out a space where animals can act for moral reasons without being as self-reflective (or self-congratulatory) as humans sometimes are. With clear-headed thinking, he maps out the terrain where ethics, philosophy of mind, and cognitive ethology meet. This book will be an indispensable to everyone concerned about justifying moral respect for animals."--Colin Allen, Department of History and Philosophy of Science, Indiana University
"Readers enticed by the title and anticipating an animal rights book for general audiences will be challenged by this closely reasoned work.... Rowlands...has produced both a valuable contribution to animal ethics literature and a fine example of the application of philosophical reasoning to a controversial topic."-- W.P. Hogan, CHOICE
"Can animals be moral? In his book of that title, Mark Rowlands argues that they can be, in the sense that they can act for moral reasons. In Rowlands terminology, they can be 'moral subjects'." -- Mind
About the Author
Mark Rowlands is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Miami. He is the author of fourteen books, translated into more than twenty languages. His autobiography, The Philosopher and the Wolf was published in 2008, and became an international bestseller.
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Rowlands produces a substantial nuanced argument to show us that while animals may not deliberate on whether an action is morally justified, they can still be said to be acting morally. He does this by arguing that this conception of moral action that includes a necessary component of deliberation is misguided. While such deliberation would be necessary for one to be considered a moral agent it is not necessary to be a moral 'subject' - a creature capable of acting from moral reasons. An excellent book, both philosophically complex and enjoyably readable. Perhaps what I enjoyed most about it is that the after a short survey of the literature (shorter than is ordinarily seen) a clear argument developed over the length of the book. There were no tangential chapters on minor problems or related issues, just the main argument dealing with the problem at hand. Also, unrelated to the content, it is nice to find a philosophy book that has a cover illustration which isn't a abstract muddle of colour or drab painting!