Defenders of the `political turn’ in animal ethics agree that animals must be represented within democratic decision-making processes. There are, however, deep disagreements about how to represent animals politically, and these disagreements rest in part on deeper disagreements about the very nature and value of democracy itself. Traditional mainstream theories of democracy have typically emphasized that democracy is tied to ideas of political community and political agency. Because animals have often been seen as incapable of participating in either political community or political agency, many theories of the animal political turn seek to articulate a conception of democracy that downplays questions of community and agency, and focuses instead simply on aggregating affected interests. Dr. Will Kymlicka will argue that this is a mistake, both for animals and humans, and that an animal-friendly democracy must be responsive to diverse forms of community and agency.
Will Kymlicka is the Canada Research Chair in Political Philosophy at Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada. His research interests focus on issues of democracy and diversity, and in particular on models of citizenship and social justice within multicultural and multispecies societies. He has published eight books and over 200 articles, which have been translated into 34 languages. He is the co-author with Sue Donaldson of Zoopolis: A Political Theory of Animal Rights (Oxford University Press, 2011), and co-editor of Animal Labour: A New Frontier of Interspecies Justice? (OUP, 2019).
This public lecture is free and open to the public. Thanks to the Brooks Institute for their generous support of this lecture series.
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