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The Analogical Argument for Animal Pain

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Philosophical defenders of animal liberation believe that we have direct duties to animals. Typically a presumption of that belief is that animals have the capacity to experience pain and suffering. Notoriously, however, a strand of Western scientific and philosophical thought has held animals to be incapable of experiencing pain, and even today one frequently encounters in discussions of animal liberation expressions of scepticism about whether animals really experience pain.

The Analogical Argument for Animal Pain responds to this scepticism by claiming that it is just as reasonable for me to believe that animals feel pain, given my only evidence for this is shared behaviour and physiology, as it is for me to believe that other humans feel pain on the basis of similar evidence. In this paper I expound and defend this Argument.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

Publication date: 1997-04-01

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