Intervention or Protest: Saving Nonhumans

Within current political, social, and ethical debates – in academia and society – activism and how individuals should approach issues facing nonhuman animals, have become increasingly important, ‘hot’ issues. Individuals, groups, advocacy agencies, and governments have all espoused competing ideas for how we should approach nonhuman use and exploitation. Ought we proceed through liberation? Abolition? Segregation? Integration? As nonhuman liberation, welfare, and rights’ groups increasingly interconnect and identify with other ‘social justice movements’, resolutions to these questions have become increasingly entangled with questions of what justice and our ethical commitments demand on this issue, and the topic has become increasingly significant and divisive.

This workshop aims to bring together theorists to consider how this question, and contemporary issues facing nonhumans (such as experimentation, hunting, and factory farming), ought to be answered. Questions to be asked include: ‘should the movement(s) for nonhuman animals be considered similar to other social movements, and if so what can be learned from them?’, ‘when facing nonhuman use or exploitation is protest, nonviolent resistance, active non-violent intervention, or violent intervention, the best (and most just) method?’, ‘ought we intervene in nature (for example to prevent predation), or should we ‘let them be’?’, ‘how far should we intervene, in what way(s), and by what means?’, and ‘what aim should those concerned with nonhumans strive for (e.g. liberation, integration, segregation, etc), and how could this be accomplished with how divided the movement is?’.

The overall aim of the workshop is to not only bring together new thoughts on this important topic of ‘intervention or protest’ regarding nonhumans, and to see what other social movements can contribute to these insights, but also to use this to embellish the current fledgling enquires into what the political turn in nonhuman liberation means for the specific issues nonhumans face.

Andrew Woodhall
Gabriel Garmendia da Trindade

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