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In the philosophical subdiscipline of ontology, animalism is a theory of personal identity that asserts that human persons are animals. The concept of animalism is advocated by philosophers Eric T. Olson, Paul Snowdon, Stephan Blatti, and David Wiggins.[page needed] The view stands in contrast to positions such as John Locke's psychological criterion for personal identity or various forms of mind–body dualism, such as Richard Swinburne's account. Whilst the animalist is committed to something like the claim that human persons are essentially animals, the animalist is quite content to allow non-human persons, e.g., sufficiently advanced robots, aliens, or other animals.
A common argument for animalism is known as the thinking-animal argument. It asserts the following:
A less common, but perhaps increasing, use of the term animalism is to refer to the ethical view that all or most animals are worthy of moral consideration. It may be similar, though not necessarily, to sentientism.