Unlearning Speciesist Language

In our very first blog post of 2019, we talked about speciesism--discrimination against other individuals based on which species they were born. It’s not always easy to decipher how exactly we can go about removing speciesist tendencies from our everyday lives, but thinking about the language we use--and what we say before we say it--can help us move away from exploiting animals and raise awareness about their wants and needs.

We all must continue to unlearn the prejudice of speciesism that we have been taught our entire lives. An excellent way to unlearn speciesism is by learning anti-speciesist language.

We could blab on, but how about we just let you watch this awesome video from challengespeciesism.com

Because it is ingrained in our society, it can be difficult to unlearn speciesist language, but it’s not impossible! Here are some common phases that we have reworked to be friendly to all species!

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These are only a few examples of how we can start changing our language to help individuals of all species. If you can think of another term and a way to replace it to not be speciesist, let us know at info@vegfestlondon.com 

Speciesist language exists in more than just phrases. It’s calling someone a pig when you want to call them disgusting, or calling someone a snake when you want to call them deceitful or untrustworthy. Pigs are not disgusting and snakes are not deceitful--those traits are simply what humans have decided to label those groups as, in order to remove the individual. When we do not see an animal as an individual, it is easier to exploit them. 

Be sure to check out challengespeciesism.com for other helpful videos about unlearning speciesist language!

While we’re on the topic of language, VegFest London 2019 would like to announce our feature speaker Colleen Patrick-Goudreau!


Colleen Patrick-Goudreau is changing the way we talk about, think about, and treat other animals. 

A recognized expert and thought leader on the culinary, social, ethical, and practical aspects of living vegan, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau is an award-winning author of seven books, including the bestselling The Joy of Vegan Baking, The Vegan Table, Color Me Vegan, Vegan’s Daily Companion, On Being Vegan, and The 30-Day Vegan Challenge. She is an acclaimed speaker and beloved host of the inspiring podcast, “Food for Thought,” which has been voted Favourite Podcast by VegNews magazine readers several years in a row, and her new podcast, “Animalogy,” is changing the way we talk about animals. She also co-founded the political action committee East Bay Animal PAC to work with government officials on animal issues in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Colleen shares her message of compassion and wellness on national and regional TV and radio programs, including on a monthly vegan segment on Good Day Sacramento and as a monthly contributor to National Public Radio (KQED). She has appeared on the Food Network, CBS, PBS, and FOX; interviews with her have been featured on NPR, Huffington Post, U.S. News and World Report; and her recipes have been featured on Epicurious.com and Oprah.com.

Colleen lives in Oakland, CA with her husband David and two cats, Charlie and Michiko.


We’re sure that one place you won’t hear speciesist language is in Colleen’s podcast “Food For Thought.” Make sure to check it out to get a taste of what you’ll hear at VegFest London 2019.
We can’t wait to lunch and learn with you!