1st Edition

The Rhetorical Construction of Vegetarianism

Edited By Cristina Hanganu-Bresch Copyright 2023
    198 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book explores themes in the rhetoric of vegetarian discourse. A vegan practice may help mitigate crises such as climate change, global health challenges, and sharpening socioeconomic disparities, by ensuring both fairness in the treatment of animals and food justice for marginalized populations. How the message is spread is crucial for these aims.

    Vegan practices thus uncover tensions between individual dietary choices and social justice activism, between ego and eco, between human and animal, between capitalism and environmentalism, and within the larger universe of theoretical and practical ethics. The chapters apply rhetorical methodologies to understand vegan/vegetarian discourse, emphasizing, for example, vegan/vegetarian rhetoric through the lens of polyphony, the role of intersectional rhetoric in becoming vegan, as well as ecofeminist, semiotic, and discourse theory approaches to veganism. The book aims to show that a rhetorical understanding of vegetarian and vegan discourse is crucial for the goals of movements promoting veganism.

    The book is intended for a wide interdisciplinary audience of scholars, researchers, and individuals interested in veganism, food and media studies, rhetorical studies, human-animal studies, cultural studies and related disciplines. It urges readers to examine vegan discourses seriously, not just as a matter of personal choice or taste but as one vital for intersectional justice and our planetary survival.

    1. The Discursive Construction of Veg(etari)anism: A Polyphonic Rhetoric – Cristina Hanganu-Bresch
    2. The Power of Ecological Rhetoric: Trans-Situational Approaches to Veganism, Vegetarianism, and Plant-Based Food Choices – Sibylle Gruber
    3. Becoming Vegan: A Mixed-Methods Study of Vegan Identities – Silke Feltz
    4. The Bounded Discourse of the Whole Foods Plant Based Movement – D. R. Hammontree
    5. Agency and rhetorical citizenship in nineteenth century and contemporary vegetarian discourses in the United Kingdom – Kristin Kondrlik
    6. Vegetarianism and The Rhetorical Ecology of the Moosewood Cookbook Collective – Lora Arduser
    7. "Cruelty-Free" Cruelty: How Vegan Rhetoric Hides the Truth of Banana Production – Lindsay Garcia
    8. Maintaining "meat’s masculinity": Rhetorical constructions of vegan manhood – Abby Dubisar
    9. "Bleeding Burgers: Brutality, Masculinity, and the Veg(etari)an Narrative" – Erin Trauth
    10. Chicken without Chicken, Sausage without Sausage: Rhetorical Remediations of Vegetarian and Vegan Foods Recalling Meat - Francesco Buscemi


    Cristina Hanganu-Bresch is Associate Professor of English at St. Joseph’s University. Her research so far has focused on the rhetoric of health and medicine, with a focus on psychiatry, and scientific writing; she also has a strong interest in animal studies and vegetarianism. She has co-authored and edited several books, among which Diagnosing Madness (with Carol Berkenkotter, 2018), and Veg(etari)an Arguments in Culture, History, and Practice: The V word (with Kristin Kondrlik, 2021).