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Title: Vegetarians in modern Beijing : food, identity and body techniques in everyday experience
Author: Wang, Yahong
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 2020
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This study investigates how self defined vegetarians in modern Beijing construct their identity through everyday experience in the hope that it may contribute to a better understanding of the development of individuality and self identity in Chinese society in a post traditional order, and also contribute to understanding the development of the vegetarian movement in a non--'Western' context. It is perhaps the first scholarly attempt to study the vegetarian community in China that does not treat it as an Oriental phenomenon isolated from any outside influence. Using qualitative data collected from interviews with vegetarians and non vegetarians, observation and text from social media, this study finds that the motivations behind vegetarians in modern Beijing are highly similar to the motivations revealed in studies of vegetarians in other societies. The religious influence may be especially noticeable in the local context and is often combined with other arguments for vegetarianism, such as ethics. Vegetarians in Beijing have developed different strategies to maintain their vegetarian identity in a mostly non vegetarian society, including taking more control of their own diet, using rhetoric to avoid direct confrontation and making certain compromises. Vegetarianism related organizations are important in forming the vegetarian community, yet a general depoliticisation of vegetarianism in China makes it difficult to strive for more rights for vegetarians. The thesis suggests areas for future research about the vegetarian community in China, the global vegetarian movement and how it may contribute to future policy making.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: HM Sociology