Piece of Meat

10th November 2011 by

Update: We’ve been in touch with the Vegan Society who assured us that they “have values which avoid the exploitation of human animals, alongside our vegan values” and had nothing to do with this stunt. It turns out the stunt was organised by PETA , no big surprise given their track record objectifying women.

I stumbled across this horrible caption competition today. I’m not going to put the photo up here because it makes me feel really unsettled. It shows children’s TV presenter Sarah-Jane Honeywell lying ‘like a piece of meat’ naked  on a giant plate with some plastic chips and peas. Bizarrely this stunt  happened in Trafalgar Square to mark World Vegan Day. This is inappropriate on so many levels.

I don’t understand how Sarah-Jane Honeywell, her agent, the children’s TV channel she represents, all the people working on World Vegan Day and the Orange phone network (who ran the caption competition), could have agreed to this piece of meat stunt without realising that it was a wildly bad idea. Also, given that it is now properly winter, why would anyone agree to lie down naked on a plate in Trafalgar Square?

It’s really unfortunate that for the majority of women who want to make a career in the media, their body is still the most effective tool they have. I have sympathy for people who think that this is their option for career progression, because in some cases (due to no fault or short coming of their own) this is probably true. Even so this one crosses a few boundaries. Children’s TV presenters, if anyone is, should surely be exempt from this sort of soft porn stunt.  Clearly treating people like meat makes for an inappropriate stunt.

Urggh, I’m going home for a vegan dinner and since it’s November I’ll have all my clothes on.

2 Responses to “Piece of Meat”

  1. Julie says:

    I think this connects well to the book “The Sexual Politics of Meat” by Carol J. Adams: http://www.caroljadams.com/spom.html

  2. Jo says:

    Thanks for the link Julie. Carol J Adam’s work looks really interesting, including a great blog Meat Misogyny: Sexual Politics of Meat Chic here http://www.onegreenplanet.org/lifestyle/meat-misogyny-sexual-politics-of-meat-chic/

    The images she discusses in the blog above are pretty shocking, but it’s sadly easy to imagine how in a pop culture context they could slip by without too much attention at all.


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