Essential vegan books to bolster your activism
Browse the following list of books on animal rights, activism, and veganism to enhance your outreach with knowledge, skills, and historical perspective.
The Animal Activist’s Handbook: Maximizing Our Positive Impact in Today’s World by Matt Ball and Bruce Friedrich
This handbook is filled with great ideas on how to create a better world through the power of thoughtful, impassioned, and joyous activism. Authors and seasoned activists, Matt Ball and Bruce Friedrich, build a ground-up case for creating a better world through reasoned and thoughtful activism that makes the most possible difference and suggest a variety of ways to live a meaningful life through effective and efficient advocacy. Learn more.
Animal Camp: Reflections on a Decade of Love, Hope and Veganism at Catskill Animal Sanctuary by Kathy Stevens
This charming book tells the stories of animals who have been brought back from lives of abuse and find kindness, healing, and happiness at the Catskill Animal Sanctuary. It is a great resource to refer people to when discussing the lives of animals in our food industry. Learn more.
Beyond Beliefs: A Guide to Improving Relationships and Communication for Vegans, Vegetarians, and Meat Eaters by Melanie Joy
This book has a collection of useful tools and guidance to assist us in communicating our message effectively to meat eaters, vegans, and even other advocates, enabling us to cultivate healthy relationships with those we’re trying to influence. Joy provides some top tips for you to learn principles and tools for creating healthy relationships, understand how to effectively communicate about challenging topics, and recognize how the psychology of being vegan/vegetarian or a meat eater affects your relationships with others — and with yourself. Learn more.
Change of Heart: What Psychology Can Teach Us About Spreading Social Change by Nick Cooney
Change of Heart uses a number of popular key questions from across the social justice movements to provide insights from a psychological perspective on the effects our outreach efforts have on behavior change. It examines more than eighty years of research in areas including social psychology, communication studies, diffusion studies, network systems, and social marketing, distilling the highlights into easy-to-use advice for anyone wanting to spread progressive social change. Learn more.
Doing Democracy: The MAP Model for Organizing Social Movements by Bill Moyer and JoAnn MacAllister, Mary Lou Finley
Doing Democracy is a guide to understanding the complexities behind social movements and the strategies responsible for making them successful. Through a combination of theories and working models, Doing Democracy provides an overview and analysis of social movements. This excellent resource outlines the eight stages of social movements, the four roles of activists, and case studies from across a diverse number of movements to provide insights into what we can do to ensure their long-term success. Learn more.
Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer
Eating Animals is a synthesis of personal memoir, science, and philosophy that investigates the behind-the-plate story of what it really means to eat animals in an industrialized world. This book is helpful to refer to when engaging with others on vegan living. Whether someone is trying to reduce their meat consumption, taking part in a monthly veg pledge, or simply looking for further information, Eating Animals has diverse appeal. Learn more.
The End of Animal Farming by Jacy Reese
The End of Animal Farming describes the role that advances in technology, science, and activism have in making the end of animal farming a foreseeable reality rather than a naive pipe dream. This out-of-the-box yet practical book is a great read for vegans and non-vegans alike because it recognizes the potential for creating a vegan world that has the same delicious food we eat today, minus the animal cruelty. Learn more.
Ethics into Action: Henry Spira and the Animal Rights Movement by Peter Singer
This book details the story of Henry Spira, a lifelong animal rights activist who is regarded as one of the most well-known, effective animal rights activists of his time. This classic animal rights book describes activism in the twentieth century, which helps set the stage for activism today. It also serves as a helpful guide for budding activists hoping to make a difference. Learn more.
How To Create A Vegan World by Tobias Leenaert
How to Create a Vegan World contains many valuable ideas and insights for both budding and seasoned activists, organizational leaders, and even entrepreneurs. Leenaert provides a refreshing perspective on the strategies, objectives, and communication of the vegan and animal rights movement, arguing that we need to take a pragmatic approach in our advocacy efforts if we are to influence and bring about real change within the current setup of our global society. Learn more.
How To Go Vegan by Veganuary
This book gives a concise overview of the three main reasons to go vegan — for the animals, the environment, and personal health — and offers all of the practical tools to go vegan, including meal plans, tips and tricks, what to do if you’re struggling, and how to celebrate being a vegan. Learn more.
The Lifelong Activist: How to Change the World Without Losing Your Way by Hillary Rettig
The Lifelong Activist is a useful handbook for a diverse readership, including activists, artist teachers, students, volunteers, and even entrepreneurs. It is also useful for those contemplating a career change and for those at risk of burnout. Learn more.
Meat Market: Animals, Ethics, and Money by Erik Marcus
The author examines animal agriculture’s cruelties and far-reaching social costs while evaluating the successes and failures of the animal protection movement. Meat Market is a good resource for those wishing to gain a greater understanding of the ethics and economy of animal agriculture. Learn more.
Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life, 3rd Ed. by Marshall B. Rosenberg, PhD
This classic book teaches you how to interact with others without triggering defensive reactions. Using a selection of case studies, stories, and dialogues, Rosenberg provides guidance and offers solutions to communication problems that can be applied in a variety relationships and situations. Learn more.
Striking at The Roots: A Practical Guide to Animal Activism by Mark Hawthorne
This practical guide to effective animal advocacy brings together some of the top tactics for speaking out for animals. Activists from around the globe share the strategies and tactics that have led them to successful outreach. Learn more.
30 Non-Vegan Excuses & How to Respond to Them (e-book)
Ed Winters, aka, Earthling Ed, is a vegan educator, public speaker, and content creator. In his free 122-page e-book, 30 Non-Vegan Excuses & How to Respond to Them, he empowers vegans with the knowledge and confidence to have effective conversations about veganism. The e-book is available in French, German, Greek, and Portuguese translations. Learn more.
Trauma Stewardship: An Everyday Guide to Caring for Self While Caring for Others by Laura Van Dernoot Lipsky, Connie Burk
This guide offers those who care for others and the planet a way to stay engaged, hopeful, balanced, and healthy when dealing with suffering and trauma. Through the use of interviews and animations, the authors investigate the emotional toll of advocacy work while offering practices for meeting these challenges without becoming overwhelmed by them. Learn more.
Uncaged: Top Activists Share Their Wisdom on Effective Farm Animal Advocacy by Ben Davidow
Thirty leading animal activists, including Peter Singer, Paul Shapiro, and Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, offer insights on effective farm animal advocacy. “Whether you’re an aspiring or seasoned activist, Uncaged provides an abundance of wisdom and inspiration that will help you have a big impact for farm animals.” Learn more.
Vystopia by Clare Mann
Author Clare Mann, a vegan psychologist, communications trainer, and existential psychotherapist, not only validates the experience of being vegan in a carnist world, but rejects the claims that such anguish is abnormal. As a telling witness to vystopia — a term she coined in 2017 — she provides vegans with a language and toolbox to work through their anguish and unite with others to examine one of the biggest social justice challenges of our time: our relationship with the animal kingdom. Learn more.