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Speciesism is a term found primarily in the literature dealing with animal rights. It is used in a derogatory fashion to designate a bias or prejudice analogous to racism or sexism. In speciesism, the bias is in favor of the fundamental interests of humans as opposed to those of nonhumans. A “speciesist” would be someone who favors and demonstrates partiality toward humans over animals and who believes that humans have special traits that animals lack (reason, language, technological skills, etc.), thereby making them superior and more important beings. In this way, speciesism can be seen to be a product of a strong anthropocentrism that holds humans to be the focus of and purpose for the universe.

The first expression and use of the term speciesism in ...

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