Environmental Philosophy

Volume 21, Issue 1, Spring 2024

Inês Salgueiro
Pages 5-29

Kantian Animal Ethics, Deep Dignity, and the Moral Game

This paper explores Kant’s concept of dignity to claim that animals deserve moral consideration. The central notion in the paper is of that of “moral game,” a hypothetical scenario that illustrates our obligations to cooperate with rational agents and the natural world. This game displays how rational agents can collaborate with non-rational animals despite their inability to engage in reciprocal legislation. From reflection on what this game shows and by introducing a notion of “deep dignity,” I argue that rational beings have a duty to respect the moral status of non-human creatures through indirect moral rights.