Accessibility statement

Animal Rights and Subsistence Hunting

Tuesday 3 October 2017, 12.00PM to 2.00pm

Speaker(s): Dr Josh Milburn


Theorists of animal rights generally hold that subsistence hunting is permissible. Ethical explorations of subsistence hunting, however, have had an individualistic and static character, sometimes failing to recognise that subsistence hunting is something engaged in by communities, persisting from generation-to-generation, and not something that arises only in ‘emergencies’. Subsistence hunting can be explored by thought experiments about the hunting of humans, and our responses to these can be ethically revealing. If subsistence hunting is acceptable from the perspective of animal rights, it can only be so while the community of hunters has had no chance to develop a less violent relationship with animals. This opens the door to a political approach to the ethics of subsistence hunting, wherein subsistence hunters are aided in changing their practices However, this political approach belongs to the realm of ideal theory, meaning that heaping blame and critique on contemporary subsistence hunters is confused and imprudent at best, and deeply racist at worst.

Location: Derwent College, room D/N/104

Admission: All welcome