The Philosophy of Vegetarianism

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The idea that it is morally wrong to eat animals held sway for about one thousand years among some of the most prominent ancient Greek philosophers, including Pythagoras, Empedocles, Theophrastus, Plotinus, Plutarch, Porphyry, and, perhaps, Plato. The idea then died out for almost seventeen-hundred years. Since the 1970s, however, there has been a resurgence of interest in vegetarianism, marked by lively debates and the emergence of a substantial literature in the form of scholarly books and articles.

Daniel A. Dombrowski uses the tools and insights of these contemporary debates in order to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of ancient philosophical vegetarianism. He also uses the wisdom of the Greek vegetarians as an Archimedean point from which to critique both the opponents and the defenders of contemporary philosophical vegetarianism. The book includes an annotated bibliography of the current debates in this burgeoning field of scholarship.

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