Emmanuel Levinas and the Ethics of the Animal World

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper will consider the role of the ethical imperative relating to the animals in the thought of the French-Jewish philosopher Emmanuel Levinas. The discussion will revolve around two central axes: the first being a discussion of the ethical as it relates to the animal world, where some of the central concerns of the philosophical-ethical discourse are contextual to a discussion of Levinas’ thought: animals as subjects, the principles underlying the legislation against cruelty to animals, ecology and nature, the special status of certain animals, and so on. The second axis is a specialized treatment of patterns of thought as proposed by Levinas: is it possible to extract a coherent approach to the animal world from Levinas’ writings, and if so, how does one go about doing so? Did Levinas see animals as the ‘Other’ towards which man is enjoined to assume responsibility? The question of the ethics of man’s relationship towards animals may be viewed as a radical philosophical-ethical touchstone of Levinas’ philosophy about which perhaps even Levinas himself was not aware.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-42
Number of pages37
JournalUNCANNY - Philosophy and Cultural Studies Journal
StatePublished - 2018


Dive into the research topics of 'Emmanuel Levinas and the Ethics of the Animal World'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this