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Is Vegetarianism a Feminist Issue?

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Concerned Irishman

Well-known member
Feb 27, 2009
Was reading this blog entry today and it brought up an interesting debate going on within the feminist movement with regards to the intersectionality between the feminist struggle for emancipation and the struggle for animal rights as encapsulated most pogniantly I think by the Vegan movement but also to an extent by the Vegetarian movement. The thinking is as follows:

- Feminists should be against all oppression, not just one kind - especially as oppressions are so often interlinked

-Women often speak about being treated 'like meat', and are often called names of animals to be degraded (cow, bitch etc.)

- Animals, like women, are exploited for their bodies and what they can do

- It's usually female animals who are exploited the most (male animals are studs or killed) - shown through the consumption of eggs, milk and so on

- Women speak about being 'objectified' - when an animal is killed for food it is literally turned into an object

I find this line of thinking compelling. So I open it to discussion here - should feminists embrace vegetarianism or veganism as an intersectional link to their struggle? Is it possible to be a feminist and still eat meat - after all, how is it OK to be combatting male priviledge if you refuse to check your own with regard to the animal kingdom, to whom all humans hold an undeniable priviledge?

I have still to square this one with myself intellectually - after all, I enjoy meat as much as anyone on a base level


Jun 4, 2009
I don't think so. Both are supposed to involve challenging different kinds of oppression but there isn't a necessary connection between the two as far as I can see except that they might sometimes both stem from a more fundamental concern with oppression.
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