Last weekend, I had the chance to attend a wonderful menu preview dinner at V Eats Modern Vegan–Troy Gardner’s new vegan restaurant at Trinity Groves in Dallas. The event was hosted by none other than my friends The Harvest Hands. Thank you, Courtney and Zak, for inviting me to this stellar menu tasting!
Going out and doing things on the weekend is a rare occurrence for me, now that I’m consumed with grad school life. However, last weekend, I made sure to make time to attend another event hosted by my dear friends, The Harvest Hands, in collaboration with Living Life Fresh and Compassionate Collective Co. It was such a delight to spend the evening with some of my favorite people, and I met some new people too, including Madeline Alcott (Petit Vour)!
My friend Veronica Rouly (Cherries Roses Chains) and I went together as galentines! Veronica is a passionate YouTuber and fellow vegan foodie. So as you can imagine, we had a great time obsessing over all the food and discussing future plans for online content collaboration! Continue reading
Last weekend, after working many days and nights to finish my final studio project for the fall semester (resulting in well-deserved success, I might add), I treated myself to a vegan gourmet pop up dinner at a new restaurant in Denton, 940’s Kitchen and Cocktails. I came to the event with my sister and her boyfriend, and we ran into a few friends, including some fellow bloggers, Christina from Kind Gourmet and Molly from Fashion Veggie!
This pop up was hosted by The Harvest Hands–an exciting new venture by my lovely friends, Courtney Garza and Zak Shelton. Their goal is to create delightful experiences for the community, while raising awareness of a compassionate, vegan lifestyle.
The Harvest Hands has many more events on the way, so I recommend liking their Facebook so you don’t miss any updates!
Finally, I’m sharing the highlights from this Dallas vegan pop up event that I went to back in November! My apologies for posting this so late–grad school has been my only priority these past few months. My finals ended last week and I still don’t feel caught up on rest yet. But enough about my life as a design student–let’s talk about this amazing event!
lots of flowers and leaves
all the delicious food
sweet, inspiring people
cozy, lovely atmosphere at Common Desk
Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.
Last week, on January 23rd, ‘Speciesism: The Movie’ made its Texas premiere at The Magnolia theater in Dallas. The documentary was written, directed and produced by Mark Devries, who was present at the screening.
Walking into the film, I expected an exposé about the way humans treat nonhuman animals, along with a philosophical discussion. I wasn’t wrong, but I also wasn’t expecting much humor. While I had heard that the movie had some humorous moments, I was surprised to find myself (and other attendees) truly laughing out loud several times. Devries himself narrates the documentary, managing to articulate and raise important questions about complex and heavy issues without boring the audience. He made us laugh, without belittling the issues. For those wondering, animal abuse footage was kept to a minimum.
Devries, who was not vegan when he made the documentary, begins by asking questions. These questions beget more questions, fueling a journey of discovery that includes investigations, expert insights, and conversations with everyday citizens. The film ends up challenging an extremely under-recognized form of oppression ingrained in our society (and the implications, as such)–that is, the conventional, anthropocentric notion that animals hold no value beyond human use.
I appreciated Devries’ rational approach and inquisitive nature, which encouraged viewers to think for themselves. Also, I really would have liked to see more appearances from women and vegans of color and their perspectives on speciesism and other forms of oppression. However, as a conversation starter, ‘Speciesism: The Movie’ definitely has my recommendation. I would love to see a sequel exploring the intersectionality of the issues more in depth.
A philosophical discourse in itself, this is an approachable and stimulating film that serves as a compelling start to a worthwhile conversation we ought to be having about how we treat nonhuman animals, and what that says about us. I gave the movie a standing ovation, as did the other attendees who filled up the whole theater. Regardless of whether or not you are vegan, this is a must-see for anyone interested in animals, philosophy, the environment, human health, systems of oppression, posthumanist theory, or bio-politics.
For those who have seen the film…
If you’re interested in the film’s topics, the movie’s site has some post-viewing recommendations. Also, here are some of my personal recommendations about related topics (for watching and reading):
- to watch // Thoughts From an Asian American Vegan / Forks Over Knives / Earthlings (graphic) / Sharkwater / Blackfish / Racist + Speciesist Vegans?!
- to read // The Animals Reader / The World Peace Diet / Eating Animals / The Sexual Politics of Meat / Veganism and Mi’kmaq Legends: Feminist Natives Do Eat Tofu / Vegans Against PETA blog (I love this blog 110%)
- on my to-do list // Sistah Vegan: Food, Identity, Health, and Society: Black Female Vegans Speak / The Milk Documentary / Animal Rites: American Culture, the Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory / Bodily Natures: Science, Environment, and the Material Self
Please let me know your thoughts if you have read or watched any of the above, and if you have recommendations.
Also, please see the related articles below for more material relevant to these issues! There’s so much to discuss and read about, so I simply had to include more related articles. 🙂
PSA (for UT Arlington students):
The film’s philosophical points were reminiscent of class discussions from the animal studies literature course I took in 2012, with Dr. Stacy Alaimo at UTA (possibly my favorite literature course ever–take it if you can). Through examining and discussing the works of philosophers and thinkers like Nussbaum, Bentham, Montaigne, and Derrida, the class held regular discourses about the representation of animals in human culture and the ethical implications of our widespread mistreatment of other species. ‘Speciesism: The Movie’ would have fit the curriculum very well. Those of you who have taken Dr. Alaimo’s class, I highly recommend this documentary.
Related articles (check these out!):
- ‘Never Be Silent’ and the Packaging of Neoliberal Whiteness: On Trayvon Martin, PETA, and Being a Black Critical Race Researcher in White Spaces (sistahvegan.com)
- The Biotic Woman: Vegans of Color (bitchmagazine.com)
- Vegan Women of Color Break New Ground (vegnews.com)
- Redefined Palate: Sistah Vegan Project’s Breeze Harper Dishes on Mindful Eating (civileats.com)
Did you see Speciesism: The Movie? What did you think of it? Please share your comments below!
Last night, I had to stop studying because the lights went out at my house.
When an ice storm causes a blackout in your neighborhood, it’s difficult to do anything but bundle up in several blankets and go into hibernation mode. You get cold, you get hungry, and you definitely do not feel like finishing your research paper on urban food forests. Reviewing hundreds of plants for your plant I.D. and ecology final? Nooo. Drawing the final plan for your park project? NOPE.
However charming studying by candlelight may sound, burrowing in blankets sounds like a better plan. The conditions of this ice storm have dangerously contributed to your case of senioritis, and maybe a case of the common cold…
Thank goodness for the generosity and hospitality of friends who live ten minutes away in warm apartments. Warmth and wifi make a much better study environment than an icebox of a house. A bowl of chili mac and cheese doesn’t hurt, either.
My friend said to bring snacks and ingredients, so my sister and I brought all the veggies and tofu from our fridge, to keep them from going bad. We’ve been studying all day and cooking up a storm in my friend’s cozy apartment!
I hope you are warm and safe with your loved ones!
I invite you to ‘like’ my page on Facebook and come back soon (probably in several hours) for some recipes: namely, chili mac and cheese and tofu scramble! While you are waiting, please feel free to check out the recent recipe posts I did for work in November–vegan hot chocolate and a cleansing cranberry citrus smoothie.