What Does 'Expanding the Circle' Mean?

Expanding the Moral Circle
Expanding the Moral Circle
The metaphor ‘Expanding the Circle’ means drawing more beings into the circle of moral concern of humanity. It captures humanity’s progress as a moral species.
The circle expanding includes first a class, then a nation, then a coalition of nations, then all humanity and finally the animal world. History of European Morals. 1:100. 1869.
The outwardly expanding circle embraced slaves and woman. Now it’s encompassing animals, too. The expression ‘Expanding the Circle’ was coined by William Lecky, a nineteenth century historian and philosopher.