The Gale Encyclopedia of Diets: A Guide to Health and Nutrition
M – Z
JACQUELINE L. LONGE, EDITOR
Detroit • New York • San Francisco • New Haven, Conn. • Waterville, Maine • London
Veganism (pronounced VEE-ganism), which is sometimes called strict or pure vegetarianism, is a lifestyle rather than a diet in the strict sense. The term itself was coined in 1944 by Donald Watson, a British vegan frustrated by the fact that most vegetarians saw nothing amiss with consuming eggs or dairy products. He derived vegan from combining the first three and the last two letters of the word vegetarian, maintaining that veganism represents “the beginning and the end of vegetarian.” The Vegan Society, which Watson and Elsie Shrigley co-founded in England during World War II, defines veganism as of 2007 as “a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude— as far as is possible and practical—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing, or any other purpose.” November 1, the anniversary of the foundation of the Vegan Society, is observed annually as World Vegan Day.