Environmental Philosophy

Volume 8, Issue 2, Fall 2011

Christiane Bailey
Pages 47-68

Kinds of Life
On the Phenomenological Basis of the Distinction between “Higher” and “Lower” Animals

Drawing upon Husserl and Merleau-Ponty’s phenomenological constitution of the Other through Einfühlung, I argue that the hierarchical distinction between higher and lower animals—which has been dismissed by Heidegger for being anthropocentric—must not be conceived as an objective distinction between “primitive” animals and “more evolved” ones, but rather corresponds to a phenomenological distinction between familiar and unfamiliar animals.