Melanie Joy

  Female      American      Psychologist

About Author

Melanie Joy (born 1966) is an American social psychologist and vegan activist, primarily notable for promulgating the term carnism. She is a professor of psychology and sociology at the University of Massachusetts Boston, as well as the president of Beyond Carnism, also known as Carnism Awareness & Action Network (CAAN), a non-profit advocacy group which she founded in 2010.

Joy introduced the term carnism in a 2001 article published in Satya, initially receiving little attention. Her ideas influenced subsequent studies of what has come to be known as the "meat paradox" - the apparent inconsistency in common attitudes toward animals, wherein people may express affection towards some animals while eating others - and the cognitive dissonance it entails. Some psychologists are supportive of Joy's beliefs concerning the influence of eating meat on attitudes toward animals.

Joy founded Carnism Awareness & Action Network (CAAN), later renamed Beyond Carnism, in 2010. According to a review by Animal Charity Evaluators, the organization uses public talks, media campaigns, video development, and activist training in an effort to shift the public conversation about meat mainly in the United States and Germany. The review judged CAAN's novel organizational strategies to be promising in terms of their potential to foster a sustained network of animal rights advocates, but noted that the relatively new group lacked a track record, and that the effects of its approach would be difficult to assess...

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