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S6E5: Abolition with Gary Francione

Claudia talks to lawyer and philosopher Gary Francione about abolition. Gary provides an overview of how ideas related to animals have emerged and changed since the 19th century. This includes the emergence of animal welfare, animal rights, and abolitionism. Throughout the interview Gary asserts that animal welfare and animal rights will not achieve anything until there is a paradigm shift whereby animals are no longer understood as property, food, or things to use.

About Gary Francione

Gary Francione is a published author and frequent guest on radio and television shows for his theory of animal rights, criticism of animal welfare law and the property status of nonhuman animals. He has degrees in philosophy and clerked for U.S. Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. He is the author of numerous books and articles on animal rights theory and animals and the law. His most recent book is the 2020 publication Why Veganism matters: The Moral Value of Animals and other titles include The Animal Rights Debate: Abolition or Regulation? (Columbia University Press, 2010) and Animals, Property, and the Law (Temple University Press, 1995). He is also the editor of Critical Perspectives on Animals: Theory, Culture, Science and Law, a series published by Columbia University Press. Gary has been teaching animal rights for more than 25 years and, together with Professor Ana Charlton, started and operated the Rutgers Animal Rights Law Clinic from 1990-2000, making Rutgers the first university in the U.S. to have animal rights law as part of the regular academic curriculum and to award students academic credit, not only for classroom work, but also for work on actual cases involving animal issues. Gary Francione is Board of Governors Professor of Law at Rutgers University. He is also a Visiting Professor of Philosophy at the University of Lincoln (U.K.) and an Honorary Professor of Philosophy at the University of East Anglia


Recorded: 5 October 2023

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In this Animal Highlight, fellow Virginia Thomas discusses honeybees and the ways in which they are exploited for their honey. She notes how much labour goes into making honey and the scale of the industry that relies on it. Because of the violence and exploitation in the industry vegans do not eat honey.

Animal Highlight: Honeybees

“An Abolitionist world, which would be far less alienating than the world in which we presently live, would be anything but bleak. And although I have not discussed other reasons that militate in favor of veganism, a vegan world, or a largely vegan world, may be the only way we will avoid a climate catastrophe. And a vegan world would make possible the eradication of human hunger, as well as the elimination of the specter of more pandemics and other zoonotic diseases” – Gary Francione, Why Veganism matters: The Moral Status of Animals (2020), 172.

Thank you to Animals in Philosophy, Politics, Law and Ethics (A.P.P.L.E) for sponsoring this podcast; Christiaan Mentz for hi editing work, Virginia Thomas for the Animal Highlight, Gordon Clarke for the bed music, Jeremy John (Website) for the logo. This podcast is hosted and produced by Claudia Hirtenfelder. 

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