Animals as Legal Beings: Contesting Anthropocentric Legal Orders
In this talk, Maneesha Deckha calls for a non-anthropocentric reorientation for Canadian law and other Western legal orders, by criticizing their treatment of animals as property, but also finding fault with personhood as an appropriate animal-friendly replacement. Instead, marshalling feminist and postcolonial insights, as well as critical animal studies, the book theorizes a new legal category altogether, namely beingness, as better able to protect animals from exploitation and value animals for who they are. Professor Deckha’s talk will delineate this new concept as well as outline how the foundations of anthropocentric legal systems must otherwise change to move toward justice for animals.
• Maneesha Deckha is Professor and Lansdowne Chair in Law at the University of Victoria. Her research interests include animal law, feminist theory, critical animal studies, vulnerability studies, health law, bioethics, and reproductive policy.
• Mariska Jung (she/her) is a PhD candidate at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in Belgium. She is based at the Department for Political Sciences and affiliated to RHEA, the university’s research center on gender, diversity and intersectionality. In addition she is a member of the Race-Religion Constellation research hub at Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
• Burundi-born Olave Nduwanje identifies as a non-binary trans femme (pronouns: she/her/hers). She is a published author, legal scholar, activist on anti-racism, LGBTQI+ rights, anti-capitalism, disability rights, anti-ecocide, etc.
20:00 – Welcome by Olave Nduwanje
20:05 – Maneesha Deckha (University of Victoria): Animals as Legal Beings: Contesting Anthropocentric Legal Orders
20:35 – Interview with Maneesha Deckha by Mariska Jung (VUB)
21:05 – Q&A with the Zoom-audience
21:25 – Round-up by Olave Nduwanje
21:30 – End