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More Equal Than Others Humans and the Rights of Other Animals : Humans and the Rights of Other Animals - Raffael N Fasel
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More Equal Than Others Humans and the Rights of Other Animals

Humans and the Rights of Other Animals

By: Raffael N Fasel

Hardcover | 7 June 2024

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Unprecedented demands have recently arrived at the doorstep of courts and parliaments the world over: nonhuman animals should receive some of the rights that have so far been reserved to human beings. This development has raised fundamental questions about the nature of legal rights, and who should have them.

More Equal Than Others: Humans and the Rights of Other Animals provides a sustained analysis of the fundamental rights of human and nonhuman animals to explore the issue of whether conferring fundamental legal rights to animals would undermine the equal status and rights of humans.

Raffael N Fasel proposes an unorthodox but practical solution to this issue: the Species Membership Approach (SMA). According to the SMA, legal rights and similar entitlements should be granted to animals based on the species to which they belong, not their individual capacities. By pioneering an approach that focuses on species membership rather than individual capacities, the author demonstrates how fundamental legal rights can be extended to nonhuman animals without threatening the status and equal rights of humans.

This book examines the antithetical nature of the human rights and animal rights conceptions that have so far dominated the debate and demonstrates how a middle ground can be reached between these opposing conceptions. Informed by the forgotten history of animal and human rights in the French Enlightenment, More Equal Than Others radically reimagines the spectrum of fundamental rights conceptions.

Industry Reviews
Raffael Fasel's book is marvellous, a readable and immensely persuasive argument for a set of rights for some but not all animal species. Fasel embraces the unfashionable idea that the species category matters, and by defying received opinion in this way achieves a level of intellectual innovation that is at times almost thrilling. Along the way his prose is so clear, his preparation of his ground so meticulous, that the book manages at the same time to be an astute commentary on what it means to be that supposedly most pre-eminent of species of all, a human. * Conor Gearty, Professor of Human Rights Law, LSE Law School, UK *
Fasel's book will become required reading for anyone interested in advancing the rights and well-being of non-human animals, as well as those interested in how to square such a goal with the still-urgent problem of how to better respect the dignity of all human beings. The argument presented is theoretically nuanced and deep, yet ultimately quite practical in its implications, with relevance to law, philosophy, and animal studies broadly. * Douglas Kysar, Joseph M. Field '55 Professor of Law, Yale Law School, US *
This book is at the cutting edge. * Dr Richard Ryder, President of the RSPCA, UK *
The study is not only innovative but also a page turner. It rehabilitates a species membership based approach, and opens the way for examining more questions, notably: which species and which rights? * Professor Anne Peters, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law Heidelberg, Germany *
More Equal Than Others is one of the most fascinating and original contributions to scholarship on animal (and human) rights to have emerged in recent years. Fasel employs an impressive blend of legal scholarship, the history of political ideas, and practical ethics to make a case for a radically ambitious set of legal rights for animals that do not undermine the basic entitlements of human beings. I am sure that his 'Species Membership Approach' will provoke much important debate amongst scholars and activists in the years to come. * Alasdair Cochrane, Professor of Political Theory, University of Sheffield, UK *
With his new book, More Equal Than Others: Humans and the Rights of Other Animals, Raffael Fasel enters the debates about animal rights with the rigor of a philosopher and the practicality of a lawyer. Fasel challenges a longtime skepticism by animal advocates that operating in terms of species ends up advancing speciesism with all its negative connotations. Readers with an interest in animal rights as a philosophical or practical matter will not want to miss More Equal Than Others. * Kristen Stilt, Professor, Harvard Law School, Faculty Director, Brooks McCormick Jr. Animal Law & Policy Program at Harvard, US *

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