Weak Notion of Animal Rights: A Critical Response to Feinberg and Warren’ Conceptions

The primary aim of this paper is to defend the idea that nonhuman animals have got equal rights to life. Some proponents of animal rights hold the view that nonhuman animals have the right to life, but at the same time, they adhere to the perception that the value assigned to a nonhuman animal’s life is much lower than that of human beings. This notion can be found in the works of Feinberg and Warren who have developed the idea of animal’s right to live. Both proponents agree that the other animals have weak rights to life. This paper attempts to show that the supporters of this argument have failed to explore adequately the view as why animals’ value to life is lower when compared to humans’ life. Here, the conceptions of these two authors in favour of weak notions of nonhuman animal rights are carefully scrutinized.

Keywords: Right to life, moral status, great apes, equal rights