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speciesism (SPEE-shee-ziz-uhm, -see-ziz-uhm) noun
The assumption of superiority of humans over other animal species, especially to justify their exploitation.
[Coined by psychologist Richard D. Ryder (born 1940) in 1973. From Latin species (appearance, kind, form), from specere (to look). Ultimately from the Indo-European root spek- (to observe) which is also the ancestor of such words as suspect, spectrum, bishop (literally, overseer), espionage, despise, telescope, spectator, and spectacles.]
"At one point in Darwin's voyage to South America, James Moore told me, the
naturalist stopped in Brazil, where his blood ran cold to see slaves in
manacles being tortured by Catholic traders. Darwin was enraged as a
Christian, but also as a scientist, because he recognized that the slave
trade relied on the false notion that slaves were a different, inferior
and exploitable species.
Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does. -William James, psychologist (1842-1910)
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