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Environmental Values

Killing in Self-Defence and the Case for Biocentric Individualism

Jake Monaghan

Environmental Values 27 (2018): 119-136. doi: 10.3197/096327118X15162907484439

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The primary method for defending biocentric individualism - a prominent theory of the moral value of organisms - is to appeal to the fact that there are certain things that are good for and bad for living creatures, even if they are not sentient. This defence is typically and frequently met with the objection that we can determine what is good for some living creature without thereby having any moral reason or obligation to promote or avoid undermining it. In this paper I show how a theory of the morality of defensive violence pre-empts this objection.


Interests, moral status, biocentric individualism, self-defence, defensive violence

CITATIONS in other Environmental Values articles

Editorial: Varieties of Non-Anthropocentricism: Duty, Beauty, Knowledge and Reality. Marion Hourdequin

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