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Are chimpanzees persons?

ARE CHIMPANZEES PERSONS? GERARD ELFSTROM, DEPT. OF PHILOSOPHY, AUBURN UNIVERSITY, AUBURN, AL 36849-5210

We are confident that human beings are persons and generally as confident that no other creatures are. However, we can ask exactly what qualities make an individual a person. Once those qualities are known, we can ask whether any other creatures have the same qualities. The activists of the Nonhuman Rights Project are confident that chimpanzees, at least, and likely elephants and dolphins have the qualities necessary for personhood. They then argue that such creatures should enjoy at least some of the legal rights of persons. Project activists have made their claims in several state courts in the United States. Thus far, none of their suits has been successful. However, they intend to continue filing suits in a variety of states until they achieve their goals. This paper will analyze and evaluate their arguments, then seek to provide an assessment of their cogency.

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Title Annotation:Bioethics, History, and Philosophy of Science Paper Abstracts
Author:Elfstrom, Gerard
Publication:Journal of the Alabama Academy of Science
Article Type:Book review
Date:Apr 1, 2015
Words:156
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