Thomas More's Utopia

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Throughout Utopia, Thomas More’s opinion regarding the relationship between humankind and animals was prevalent through Hythloday’s perspective. Particularly, this correlation was seen in instances surrounding war, and crimes. Although humans were seen as the superior, more intelligent animal, More believed that humans often reverted back to and were considered animals when they gave into their vices (More). For example, in Utopia, Hythloday brought up his view in regards to punishment for crimes. For murder, capital punishment was encouraged, but for criminals of theft, they were to be put to work and “if a slave [was] lazy it [was] permissible to whip him (More 29-30).” Furthermore, all slaves were distinguishable as being so because they all had “A little piece of one ear… cut off (More 30).” Additionally, the same punishment went for prisoners, captured during war. This labor system stated that the slaves will “…not only [be kept] constantly at work but also in chains (More 95).” For all slaves they were also not to associate with the public, or with anyone…show more content…
These captured animals may have tags on one ear, have a piece of an ear cut off or dyed, and are kept tied up and abused (US, Public Health Service 192). Moreover, it is known that when pet animals bite a child, or become violent, they are put down, or are sent to a pound, which is equivalent to taking away their freedom. These animals therefore get removed from the general public, just in the same way that criminals became slaves and were kept together, separated from society (More 30). Hence, More believed that when humans gave into their violent tendencies, they should be treated like animals, but if they followed the rules of society and did not commit crimes, they were allowed the privileges that humans do, like freedom, and maintained the intelligence that made us better than animals
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