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Vegetarianism: A History

3.58  ·  Rating Details ·  36 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Food writer Colin Spencer discusses those who came to vegetarianism by choice, not necessity, from the religions that preach it such as Hinduism and Seventh Day Adventism to the notable individuals who have practiced it, including Leonardo da Vinci and Gandhi. In this accessible history of vegetarianism, Spencer also explores the psychology of abstention and the ideas that ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published February 20th 2004 by Da Capo Press (first published 2001)
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Rebecca
Apr 05, 2009 Rebecca marked it as abandoned-ship
Huh. Is it just me, or is this totally unreadable unless you want a specific worldview reinforced? This is pretty out there in the Cult of Vegetarianism. This is quite dense, and I'm sure there's some valid history in there. But I do not have the patience to pick through the speculation and spiritual rambling.

Is there a vaguely objective/accessible history out there? Or some type of collection of essays from different vegetarian traditions would be really worthwhile. I'm confused that there isn'
...more
Tony Gualtieri
Dec 26, 2014 Tony Gualtieri rated it it was amazing
Vegetarianism follows a radical path through Western culture: borne in the Orphic traditions inherited by Pythagoras from Ancient Egyptian religion. It flourished within Greek philosophy becoming an essential component by the time of Plutarch and Plotinus. It was usurped by the dominant Hebraic basis of Christianity, but it continued to challenge the orthodoxy through the various heresies such as Bogomilism, Gnosticism, and Manicheanism.

Colin Spencer identifies three major factors that drive ve
...more
Emily
Mar 27, 2008 Emily rated it really liked it
I just found out that it's written by a food-writer. Which is all good, but it helps me understand it better. It's a very historical approach to vegetarianism, but it's a pretty intense journey..kind of nice to read a little history.
Michael
May 03, 2016 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing history of vegetarianism

As a Buddhist I advocate for a vegetarian diet and was amazed at the wealth of history included in this book.
John
Feb 17, 2013 John rated it it was amazing
Very good
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Author biography:

Colin Spencer was born in London in 1933 and attended Brighton Grammar School and Brighton Art College. From an early age, he was interested in both art and writing and had his first stories published in The London Magazine and Encounter when he was 22.

Spencer’s first novel, An Absurd Affair, was published in 1961, but it was with his second, Anarchists in Love (1963), the first i
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