Domaine

I am trying to put everything on hold – everything meaning my activism (which is not really possible, as I am working on three projects already…), my filmmaking, my screenwriting and my acting – so I can write Domaine, the novel I began back in 2010. I am very inspired by Emily Brontë again.

I am planing to take a trip across England very soon, if money allows it, since my novel takes places in England and Switzerland (that I already know quite well, having cycled along the lake Leman several times on beautiful hot Summers).

Emily Bronte

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Published in: on March 20, 2014 at 12:32 pm  Leave a Comment  

“Queerphobia and veganphobia”

I began working on spreading the word on vegephobia (read about it here) a year and a half ago and the people I reached to mostly reacted with relief, gratitude and deeper understanding of their situation. Because by learning about vegephobia you can see that you were not alone in being harassed, mocked, teased and put pressure on and you can understand that the real target was not you but the animals killed for consumption and that it all comes from our society being deeply speciesist, thus, instead of blaming the vegephobic people themselves you can understand them and blame society.

But, a small number of people (whom I suspect not to have read and/or understood the brochure) expressed concern about the term vegephobia turning vegetarians into yet another oppressed group and that, instead, we should show how easy and wonderful the world of vegetarian is… That, unfortunately, is exactly a result of vegephobia, because, let’s face it, the world is, still, much easier for carnists…

And, unfortunately, an even smaller number of people were upset that we dare compare vegephobia to homophobia. We did compare the two because the mechanisms of both are very similar and because they both stem from a phallocratic society. But, after my second talk about vegephobia, in Luxembourg, I was very moved to hear the testimony of a vegan homosexual, thanking us for making the connection and telling us that being vegetarian and homosexual, he did feel doubly attacked.

A few weeks ago I read Defiant Daughters (download the ebook here) and I was not really surprised but still amazed that Margaret Perret, one of the writers of that collection of essays, came up in Queering the Dinner Table with the word “veganphobia”, apparently not knowing that the term vegephobia existed since 2001, but, most of all, she compared it to “queerphobia”:

“I have found that comments about my queerness and veganism reflect queerphobia and veganphobia in patriarchal culture, respectively.  Adams presents several theoretical insights into why verbal attacks against LGBTQQIA people and vegans are structurally determined in a similar way in a patriarchal society. Perhaps most striking is the observation that both fail to take seriously the ethical, political, and personal dimensions of a vegan or queer lifestyle. Trivializing and delegitimating, verbal attacks against LGBTQQIA people and veg*ns (meaning both vegans and vegetarians) are attempts to disempower the reformer and uphold Western, patriarchal hierarchies. It is clear that responses to my veganism are not earnest efforts to understand the theoretical and moral basis for my dietary choices, but rather teasing manipulations, as indicated by ludicrous questions about the sentience of plants, the legitimacy of carnivorous animals, or the stringency of my dietary commitments. By diverting the conversation from a serious analysis of food ethics, the speaker avoids a thoughtful reexamination of the contents of her or his dinner plate and reinforces the dominant discourse that excludes veg*n voices. Queerness also threatens patriarchal hierarchies by presenting an alternative to the traditional heterosexual model. As veg*ns struggle to make their meanings understood within a culture fiercely committed to meat-eating, LGBTQQIA people struggle to make their meanings understood within a culture that only accepts the legitimacy of heterosexual relations. What is of moral, personal, political, and existential importance to veg*ns, LGBTQQIA people, and other marginalized people often becomes entertainment for those who wish to discuss, but not seriously engage with what it means to be veg*n, queer, or otherwise marginalized. I found this to be very much true to the process of coming out as a vegan and a queer person. While I have found so much acceptance and love among my friend groups and Bay Area communities, only a few members of my family know that I am vegan, and even fewer know that I am queer. I have largely kept silent about my dietary choices and sexuality because I know that my family ascribes to the Western cultural values that hold queer-vegan perspectives to be illegitimate, illogical, and inferior. When I first told my mom about my sexuality, she advised, “You are just going to have to play up the parts of yourself that you want other people to know about.” Still recovering from the stress of coming out, I just nodded. […] And later, when I told my mom about my veganism, she responded, “I just think you’re being really extreme”.

Published in: on February 17, 2014 at 10:14 pm  Comments (2)  

The Myth of Culture

The myth of culture is how I named something I came up with last week and am exploring now and when I googled it I found a book I immediately bought (it arrived today). I can’t wait to read it. It’s nice to see that I can come up with the same idea as a Cambridge scholar.

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Published in: on February 14, 2014 at 5:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

The first open rescue in Poland!

Bravo to Basta!

Read the story

Published in: on January 28, 2014 at 1:11 pm  Leave a Comment  

Silencing vegetarians

After I became vegetarian I suddenly discovered the wide spectrum of people and political or philosophical movements that prone a vegetarian diet. Albert Einstein, Leonardo Da Vinci, the Pythagoreans, Plato, a big part of the feminist movement, the Transcendentalists and many more. And I wonder: why have I not heard of those well-known people and movements as being vegetarian before? Why, on the other hand, is Hitler constantly cited as a vegetarian, when, in fact, he was not?

“One way that the dominant culture avoids the radical critique of vegetarianism is by focusing on individuals who seem to disprove the claims of vegetarians. Thus, meat eaters refer to Hitler’s “vegetarianism”. In fact, Hitler was not a vegetarian. But many meat eaters need to believe that Hitler was a vegetarian to comfort themselves with the idea that vegetarianism does not necessarily make you a better person. The message appears to be: “I don’t have to deal with this issue since Hitler was a vegetarian”. But so was Mohandas Gandhi. So was Isaac Bashevis Singer.” – Carol J.Adams in The Sexual Politics of Meat

It seems that when somebody’s vegetarianism could be influential, the general trend is to ignore it or silence it. The fact that Gandhi was vegetarian wouldn’t really surprise anyone, because he comes from a mostly vegetarian culture, a distant culture; moreover, the vegetarianism of this culture is associated with its religion, thus it becomes more of a private matter. But Isaac Bashevis Singer, on the other hand, is a holocaust survivor. Have those meat eaters who are shocked by vegetarians comparing the fate of farmed animals to an eternal Treblinka ever heard of him?

Is Socrates’s vegetarianism ever mentioned in schools? His message is amazingly modern because it is not only ethical but also environmental. In Plato’s Republic he tells Glaucon that meat production is a waste of land because it necessitates large amounts of pasture.

Do people know that Mary Shelley made her Frankenstein‘s creature vegetarian and on purpose? I don’t remember ever reading or hearing anything about it before I became vegetarian. Do they even mention it in movie adaptations?

Wait, do I not remember or is it really silenced? Could I have not remembered it just because it didn’t seem relevant to me? Could I have simply not seen it, just because it was not part of my world?

“I asked a suffrage worker […] if she had ever discussed vegetarianism with her friend, Agnes Ryan. No, she replied, it seemed relatively unimportant to her. I asked a leading feminist historian if she had noticed references to vegetarianism in the letters she had just finished reading of women pacifists of World War I. Frankly, she admitted, she would not have noticed. Ida Husted Harper who edited the last two volumes of the mammoth History of Woman Suffrage omitted any discussion of a confrontation between a vegetarian milliner and an officer of the National American Women’s Suffrage Association over an aigretted hat and a chicken dinner.” – Carol J.Adams in The Sexual Politics of Meat

Do we question what we don’t want to question or only what we want to question? That is the question…

Published in: on January 27, 2014 at 12:09 pm  Leave a Comment  

The grandeur of man

It amazes me to think that humankind has accomplished so many mind-blowing achievements – moving from Africa, houses, bridges, temples, discoveries etc – while each man/woman who has been involved it them had their own life story with its own problems, insecurities, heart breaks, self-judgment and all kinds of feelings…

Published in: on December 28, 2013 at 1:53 am  Leave a Comment  

Looking at the sky

As I lay in the back yard listening to a lecture on Camus, I look at the thin clouds on the bright shiny blue L.A. sky and I see two colors on the clouds, pink and green… First I think it is a rainbow, but there is no rain… Then I think it is an optical illusion and I look at other parts of the sky and clouds, but I don’t see the colors there… So I go back to the colors and they’re still there. And I begin to think of the Universe and how we are all connected, and I think of my heartbreaks I’m dealing with now and it makes me think of my new screenplay I am working on right now, “We are Stardust” and I finally come up with how my story should be developed and right at that moment, the color pink and green go away and there is only blue and white…

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Published in: on December 28, 2013 at 12:52 am  Leave a Comment  

My Los Angeles life

These days I write mostly on my L.A. Woman blog:

http://lawomanjola.wordpress.com/

posting pictures telling about my adventures.

Published in: on December 10, 2013 at 7:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

Vegephobia is Speciesism

After giving two lectures on vegephobia I realized that although some people react to the introduction of this word as if it had revealed them what that always tried to express but didn’t know how and were truly thankful for it, a small but significant amount of people seems to not understand the concept and why would we make such a fuss about something they find so unimportant that they’d rather hide it… For them, but especially for the animals exploited and killed, I wrote an article – soon to be published – explaining how hiding vegephobia and denying it worsens the problem.

I will prepare a new lecture on vegephobia, based on this article and I hope it will clear any doubts…

Published in: on November 6, 2013 at 7:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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International Animal Rights Conference

I will be giving a lecture on Vegephobia at this year’s IARC in Luxembourg on September 12.

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Check out the IARC website

Published in: on August 25, 2013 at 5:34 pm  Leave a Comment