An Article Series from 


Animal Rights/Vegan Activists' Strategies

How Do We Change Culture? On Cultural Strategy for Animal Freedom

From Animal Think Tank
May 2024

It is important to take into account that a massive cultural change needs to dialogue with the dominant culture. Big cultural changes are not made overnight like a revolution, but are built through negotiations with aspects of the culture that we may not necessarily like.

Elephant and Man
Photo by Sultan Ahmed Niloy on Pexels

Before we get started, what is culture?

It is difficult to summarise this concept without undermining its complexity. However, in broad terms, culture is the prevailing beliefs, values, creations, norms, customs, behaviours, practices and attitudes of a group of people at a point in time. In other words, culture is how we think, what we hold dear and how we act. Culture is not just about a worldview, but a worldview that has been realised in practice and is experienced simply as the way of life in a group/community/society.

Culture happens whenever beliefs, values and practices etc. are transmitted between people. Since the main characteristic of culture is that it only exists when transmitted, culture can be seen most clearly in our behaviours and practices (formed by norms, habits, skills and communication).

Culture also mediates our thoughts and feelings. For example, seemingly individual emotions like jealousy or envy reveal themselves as deeply social as these emotions arise more prominently in societies where monogamy and competition are valued.

Culture also lies behind systems. Having laws, enforcing rights in a certain way, and using certain structures to communicate, for example, are systemic elements that are also part of a culture. That is why they change from country to country and even more so from one region of the world to another. Some countries still use the law of “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth”, others use prisons and some are already starting to use principles of restorative justice to repair social harm. This means that systems are also cultural.


Please read the ENTIRE ARTICLE HERE, including:

  • What is cultural change?
  • How do we change the cultural landscape?
  • What are the key strands of cultural change?
  • What is the relationship between Movement Culture and Cultural Strategy?
  • What does it mean to change the dominant culture in favour of a non-speciesist culture/kinship worldview?

Posted on May 10, 2024
Return to Animal Rights/Vegan Activist Strategies