Rights of Non-Humans? Electronic Agents and Animals as New Actors in Politics and Law

Journal of Law and Society, Vol. 33, pp. 497-521, 2006

21 Pages Posted: 29 Mar 2006 Last revised: 8 Sep 2009

See all articles by Gunther Teubner

Gunther Teubner

Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: 2006

Abstract

Personification of non-humans is best understood as a strategy of dealing with the uncertainty about the identity of the other, which moves the attribution scheme from causation to double contingency and opens the space for presupposing the others' self-referentiality. But there is no compelling reason to restrict the attribution of action exclusively to humans and to social systems, as Luhmann argues. Personifying other non-humans is a social reality today and a political necessity for the future. The admission of actors does not take place, as Latour suggests, into one and only one collective. Rather, the properties of new actors differ extremely according to the multiplicity of different sites of the political ecology.

Keywords: non-humans, animals, person, personification, legal person, legal theory, system theory

JEL Classification: K10, K40

Suggested Citation

Teubner, Gunther, Rights of Non-Humans? Electronic Agents and Animals as New Actors in Politics and Law (2006). Journal of Law and Society, Vol. 33, pp. 497-521, 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=892962

Gunther Teubner (Contact Author)

Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://www.jura.uni-frankfurt.de/ifawz1/teubner/

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