Peter Singer is Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics, University Center for Human Values, Princeton University.
Born in Australia, Singer received his B.A. and M.A. from the University of Melbourne and, in 1971, his B. Phil from University College, Oxford. During his teaching career, he has held positions in philosophy in England, the United States, and Australia. While a student at Oxford, Singer was deeply affected by a group of people who had become vegetarians for ethical reasons. Joining their commitment to the rights of animals, he wrote Animal Liberation: A New Ethics for Our Treatment of Animals (1975), a persuasively reasoned, yet clearly understandable defense of the rights of animals. Singer's vocal concern for the proper treatment of animals has triggered a new appreciation of the anthropocentric bias of traditional Western moral philosophy; other philosophers have followed his lead. Complaining that ethical theorists have focused too intensely upon the rights, responsibilities, and treatment of humans, Singer dubs this malady "speciesism" and calls for a broader moral perspective---one that includes a sensitivity to the needs and concerns of other sentient creatures.