A sociology instructor at North Carolina State University (NCSU) is warning in a new academic article that vegan men are guilty of perpetuating “white masculinity.”
“Meatless meals and masculinity” was written by Mari Mycek, a doctoral candidate and teaching assistant in the NCSU sociology department, who argues that vegan and vegetarian men have reclaimed their “previously-stigmatized consumption identity” to wield power over women by framing their lifestyle as a rational, rather than emotional, choice.
Though some scholars claim that eating meat causes “toxic masculinity,” Mycek came to a different conclusion based on interviews with 20 vegan men, asserting that they actually tend to “uphold gendered binaries of emotion/rationality and current ideas of middle-class, white masculinity.”
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Mycek argues that vegan men use their diet to bolster their masculinity “by explaining their choice to become [vegan] in ways that evoke logics of rationality, science, and reason, concepts that also traditionally get coded as masculine."
Observing that “these performances of masculinity are aligned with white middle-class social norms and expectations,” she contends that middle-class men are uniquely poised to take advantage of this status-building strategy.
Mycek also frames veganism as a privilege for the elite, explaining that it symbolizes for men “a form of cultural capital and a symbolic resource, a way to align oneself with those who have the privilege of choice when it comes to food decisions.”
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Men are especially guilty of perpetuating white masculinity if they frame their choice to become vegan as “rational” as opposed to “emotional,” Mycek asserted.
Lucas, a 29 year-old who works in technology, was one example. “I try to stay under the radar, but it might come up. Then, I just explain it matter of fact,” Lucas told Mycek when asked to explain his veganism.
Another student accused of being “rational” was Tyler, a 22 year-old who chose veganism after learning about environmental issues.
“I started being more interested in environmental issues and I realized that my diet could
Read more: https://www.campusreform.org/?ID=10669