1st Edition

Culture and Activism Animal Rights in France and the United States

By Elizabeth Cherry Copyright 2016
    188 Pages
    by Routledge

    188 Pages
    by Routledge

    Winner of the Award for Distinguished Scholarship from the Animals & Society Section of the American Sociological Association

    This book offers a comparison of the animal rights movements in the US and France, drawing on ethnographic and interview material gathered amongst activists in both countries. Investigating the ways in which culture affects the outcomes of the two movements, the author examines its role as a constraining and enabling structure in both contexts, showing how cultural beliefs, values, and practices at the international, national, and organizational levels shape the strategic and tactical choices available to activists, and shedding light on the reasons for which activists make the choices that they do.

    With attention to the different emphases placed by the respective movements on ideological purity and pragmatism, this volume provides an account of why their achievements differ in spite of their shared ultimate goals, offering policy recommendations and suggestions for activists working in a variety of cultures. Informed by the work of Giddens and Bourdieu, Culture and Activism: Animal Rights in France and the United States constitutes an empirically grounded, comparative study of activism that will appeal to scholars of sociology, anthropology, political science, and cultural geography with interests in social movements and social problems.

    List of Figures


    Comparing Movements

    1. Investigating Movement Success

    2. A History of Animal Rights in France and the United States

    Cultural Resources

    3. Environment & Religion

    4. Health

    5. Food

    6. Media & Terrorism

    Strategic Choices

    7. American Pragmatism

    8. French Consistency and Cross-Cultural Choices

    Movement Outcomes

    9. Explaining Movement Success

    Appendix 1: List of Participants




    Elizabeth Cherry is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Manhattanville College, USA.

    ‘In this lovely comparison of French and American animal rights movements, Cherry helps us understand why the French have so resisted vegetarianism, among other differences. She also shows how culture and strategy are deeply entwined, an important lesson for scholars as well as activists.’ - James M. Jasper, Graduate Center of the City University of New York, USA