Martin’s Act at 200: Exploring the Past, Present and Future of the Animal Protection Movement

On July 22, 1822, the Cruel Treatment of Cattle Act, sponsored by the Irish Member of Parliament Richard “Humanity Dick” Martin, was signed into law by King George IV. The Act is widely considered to be the first piece of animal welfare legislation from a Western political body. Through a radio documentary, interviews, and essays, this website tells the story of Richard Martin, and the Act’s legacy over two centuries of animal advocacy.

Sponsored by the Culture & Animals Foundation and Martin Rowe, and directed by writer Alex Lockwood, chart2050 and the Martin’s Act at 200 radio documentary offer a critical examination of learning from the past to conceive of a better future. Join us on the journey.

“Et Tu, Brute? The Case for Human Rights for Animals

Outside/In Podcast, New Hampshire Public Radio. June 2, 2022.

Happy has lived in New York City’s Bronx Zoo for years. To visitors, she’s a lone Asian elephant. But to a team of animal rights lawyers, she’s a prisoner. They’ve petitioned state courts for a writ of Habeas Corpus; a legal maneuver that, if granted, would declare Happy a legal person who deserves to be freed. It’s the latest case in an ongoing fight to extend basic human rights to animals – one that could have big repercussions in the natural world.

Because this is a case that deals with animals AND the law, two podcasts from New Hampshire Public Radio have teamed up to take it on: Outside/In and Civics 101. We always hear about the animal rights movement… but what rights do animals actually have?

Featuring: Maneesha Deckha and Kevin Schneider

In Tune to Nature Podcast: Animals as Legal Beings Rather than Persons or Objects

with Law Professor Maneesha Deckha, University of Victoria
Host: Carrie Packwood Freeman
(Wednesday, January 20th, 2021)

Legal scholar Maneesha Deckha explains her novel category of “beingness” to raise the legal status of animals, in her new book Animals as Legal Beings: Contesting Anthropocentric Legal Orders (Univ of Toronto Press, 2021). In this 25-minute interview on In Tune to Nature, hosted by Carrie Freeman, Professor Deckha (Univ of Victoria, BC, Canada) explains how feminism, postcolonialism, and critical animal studies informs her less exclusionary and more universal notion of a legal “being” as opposed to some ideal and limiting legal notion of an independent, rational “person.”


Date recorded: 20 January 2021

External link: https://cpfreeman.podbean.com/e/animals-as-legal-beings-rather-than-persons-or-objects-with-law-prof-maneesha-deckha/

The Animal Turn Podcast (S1 E4)

Personhood with Maneesha Deckha

In this episode Maneesha Deckha explains the legal concept of personhood, why animal advocates are trying to include animals within the category and the potential of a different concept, ‘Legal Beingness’, to side-step some of the challenges of Personhood as a concept.


Date recorded: 2 April 2020

External link: https://iroarpod.com/s1e4-personhood-with-maneesha-deckha/

Guest: Maneesha Deckha is Professor and Lansdowne Chair in Law at the University of Victoria. Her research interests include critical animal studies, animal law and legalities, postcolonial feminist theory, and reproductive law. She is widely published and has received multiple grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and other funding bodies. She has also held the Fulbright Visiting Chair in Law and Society at New York University. Her book project on feminism, postcolonialism and critical animal law entitled Animals as Legal Beings: Contesting Anthropocentric Legal Orders is forthcoming from the University of Toronto Press. She serves as the Director of the Animal Studies Research Initiative at the University of Victoria and is a Brooks Animal Studies Academic Network Fellow. Read more about Maneesha Deckha here.

Host: Claudia Hirtenfelder is a PhD Candidate in Geography and Planning at Queen’s University and is currently undertaking her own research project that looks at the historical relationships between animals and cities.

Featured readings/speeches:  

Bed Music created by Gordon Clarke (Instagram: @_con_sol_)

Podcast Logo created by Jeremy John (Website)

Sponsored by Animals in Philosophy, Politics, Law and Ethics – A.P.P.L.E (Website)

Part of iROAR, an Animals Podcasting Network and the CFRC Podcast Network