Chickpeas and Change

Hi, all! So I talk a lot about how vegan consumption habits constitute a mere extension of my broader politics of radical anti-capitalism, anti-speciesism, anti-racism, and feminism. Consuming vegan goods hardly constitutes a revolutionary act in and of itself; in fact, I think that believing it does plays right into a capitalist discourse of “purchasing power” and individualism. It’s this belief — which we can call “lifestyle politics” — that I want to discuss and challenge in this post.

What is lifestyle politics? As I understand the term, it stems from an anarchist philosophy of “prefigurative politics”: a belief that in order to work toward the society in which we want to live, we must “build forms of organization today that prefigure the future society” (D’Amato, Feb. 2009). Taking a page from the second-wave feminist book, proponents of lifestyle politics uphold the assertion that “the personal is political,” and attempt…

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