Philosopher Peter Singer will begin by setting out the traditional Western view of the moral status of animals. Next he will discuss what he refers to as the “mainstream” view today, and offer a critique of this view. He will argue that, notwithstanding the progress made over the past 40 years, our treatment of animals remains wrong because it is “speciesist.” He will explain the concept of “speciesism” and indicate why it is not an ethically defensible view. Dr. Singer argues that we owe nonhuman animals equal consideration of their interests, and he will explain the changes this view requires in our present practices regarding animals.
Dr. Singer is currently the Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics in the University Center for Human Values at Princeton University. Since 2005, he has combined this position with that of Laureate Professor at the University of Melbourne. He is also the co-founder of The Life You Can Save and continues to actively work with the organization and serve on its board of directors. The Life You Can Save, based on his book of the same name, is a nonprofit devoted to improving the lives of people living in extreme poverty.