Veganism through an intersectional lens:A study on racial perspectives in the Swedish vegan community

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Göteborgs universitet/Institutionen för globala studier

Sammanfattning: During the past decade, veganism has increased in the global North. In current debates in theU.S., the vegan community has been accused of being a white, privileged lifestyle movementthat reinforces neoliberal attitudes and colonial influences of universalism, color blindness,and capitalist consumption. Therefore, this study aims to understand and analyze veganism inSweden through an intersectional lens. By implication, this thesis seeks to explore whetherthe vegan community is inadvertently perpetuating oppressive discourses where thetheoretical framework postcolonial feminism and concepts such as intersectionality andwhiteness will be used. The data in this study is collected from semi-structured interviewswith ten vegans, five of whom self-identified as white, five self-identified as vegans of color.All respondents were aged between 23-34 years, situated in various parts of Sweden. Theresults indicate that there is a problem of whiteness, although rendered invisible, in theSwedish vegan community which affects both white vegans and vegans of color, albeit indifferent ways. This becomes manifested in the lack of understanding of how oppressionbased on gender, ethnicity, class etc., are interconnected. By extension, the results amplifythat there is a need to diversify its representation. Examples that emerged were that the whitevegans need to give space to the vegans of color instead of taking it from them; to be an allyand not just say so. However, this is not exclusive to the vegan community but applies tosociety as a whole.

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