Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling


Many people believe that only humans have the cognitive and behavioral capacities needed for suicidal behavior, such as reflexive subjectivity, free will, intentionality, or awareness of death. Three counterarguments — based on (i) negative emotions and psychopathologies among nonhuman animals, (ii) the nature of self-destructive behavior, and (iii) the problem of model fidelity in suicide research — suggest that self-destructive and self-injurious behaviors among human and nonhuman animals vary along a continuum.

Author Biography

David M. Peña-Guzmán is Assistant Professor in Humanities and Liberal Studies at San Francisco State University. He holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Emory University. His interests include animal cognition and behavior, the history and philosophy of science, continental philosophy, and social theory.


Article Thread

Peña-Guzmán, David M. (2017) Can nonhuman animals commit suicide?. Animal Sentience 20(1)

Glymour, Clark (2017) On assisted suicide. Animal Sentience 20(2)

Lester, David (2017) Non-human animal suicide could be tested. Animal Sentience 20(3)

Benvenuti, Anne (2017) Evolutionary continuity. Animal Sentience 20(4)

Ristau, Carolyn A. (2017) Self, death, and suicide: Does an animal know of these?. Animal Sentience 20(5)

Thomas, Roger K. (2017) Is psychological science committing “suicide” by linguistic muddling?. Animal Sentience 20(8)

Brooks Pribac, Teya (2017) Complicated grief. Animal Sentience 20(9)

Preti, Antonio (2018) Animal suicide: Evolutionary continuity or anthropomorphism?. Animal Sentience 20(10)