Course Reader REL 407/507 The Bull in the China Shop, Winter 2010: Annotated
Interview w/David Petersen: Ethics of killing animals for food. Attempts to go beneath the surface of the food culture and questions vegetarianism as well as trophy hunting. Makes case for hunter-gatherer respect for food animals.
Provides overview of three of the most prominent ethical view of animals: Rights, Utilitarianism, and Contractarianism, and raises questions of all three.
Outline of the history of animal ethics in the West and adds comments regarding Virtue Ethics & the Ethics of Care.
Religious basis for one Jewish Rabbi’s vegetarianism.
Brief account of a Muslim view of animal ethics citing the Qur’an.
Ecofeminist critique of hunting for psychological, ecological, spiritual, and psychosexual need. Offers alternative to hunting relationship to animals.
Overview of Jaina and Buddhist view of animals in India, followed by discussion of animal use in science.
Presents a view of animals that is not speciesism (i.e., not based on human-centered species bias) and instead claims the equality of all animals, human and nonhuman, based on sentience, characterized by perception, feeling, and in this article especially, the capacity to suffer.
Discusses the consequences of large scale farming of animals, e.g., the agribusiness of food animals.
The three key early Confucians are: Confucius (Kongzi), Mencius (Mengzi), and Xunzi. This article gives a snapshot of Confucius’ ethics, especially ethical development, or moral cultivation.
Explains Mencius’ method of extending virtue from immediate surroundings into society. Focuses on the key passage for Confucian view of sacrificing oxen, Mencius 1A7. Essential reading.
Further examination of animal sacrifice in Mencius, in particular ritual, li, and human virtue.
Xunzi is the third great Confucian after Confucius himself and Mencius. Here, Ivanhoe describes Xunzi’s contrast with Mencius on human nature, and also Xunzi’s view of the partnership of Heaven, Earth, and Human Beings.
Zhuangzi’s view of blending with the Dao beyond words with the example of Cook Ding carving oxen.
Two episodes not in Basic Writings: Zhuangzi out hunting, and Zhuangi refusing to use a pulley to draw water.
There are two key episodes in the Zhuangzi for this course: Cook Ding the oxen carver, and this episode, hunting in Diaoling Park (Tiao-ling), the focus of this article by Ivanhoe, and what he calls Zhuanzi’s conversion experience.
Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism on the “self” concept and time w/great consequences for nature & society.
Japanese views of nature, especially Buddhist, and culminating with the Pure Land views of Shinran.