Irina Mikhalevich and Russell Powell, Minds without spines: Evolutionarily inclusive animal ethics


We welcome Mikhalevich & Powell’s (2020) (M&P) call for a more “‘inclusive”’ animal ethics, but we think their proposed shift toward a moral framework that privileges false positives over false negatives will require radically revising the paradigm assumption in animal research: that there is a clear line to be drawn between sentient beings that are part of our moral community and nonsentient beings that are not.

Author Biography

Walter Veit is a PhD candidate in the School of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Sydney. His dissertation is on the origins of sentience and consciousness as a “mere” byproduct of the evolution of damage detection, nociception, and pain. Website

Bryce Huebner is the Provost's Distinguished Associate Professor in Philosophy at Georgetown University. He is primarily interested in the structure of cognition and agency, the different kinds of minds we find in our world, and the implications of cognitive science research for ethical theorizing. Website