Eden’s diet: Christianity and vegetarianism 1809 – 2009

Calvert, Samantha Jane (2013). Eden’s diet: Christianity and vegetarianism 1809 – 2009. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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The vegetarian teachings of the Salvation Army, Quakers, the Seventh Day Adventists and other Christian groups have been largely neglected by academics. This study takes a prosopographical approach to the development of modern Christian vegetarianism across a number of Christian vegetarian sects, and some more mainstream traditions, over a period of two centuries. The method allows for important points of similarity and difference to be noted among these groups’ founders and members. This research contributes particularly to radical Christian groups’ place in the vegetarian movement’s modern history. This study demonstrates how and why Christian vegetarianism developed in the nineteenth century and to what extent it influenced the secular vegetarian movement and wider society. It contextualizes nineteenth-century Christian vegetarianism in the wider movement of temperance, and considers why vegetarianism never made inroads into mainstream churches in the way that the temperance movement did. Finally, the study considers the pattern of Christian vegetarianism’s development in four distinct periods (1809-1847, 1848-1889, 1890-1959 and 1960-2009) as well as the many principles and behaviours these sectarian groups shared such as a desire for a return to Eden or the Golden Age, dualism, purity and biblical vegetarianism.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Department of Theology and Religion
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/4575


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