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From Pythagoras to the present, tracing the deep roots of today's movement for animals. Free audio download.
From Pythagoras to the present, tracing the deep roots of today's movement for animals. Free audio download.
From Pythagoras to the present, tracing the deep roots of today's movement for animals. Free audio download.
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Paris - philosophers and revolutionaries

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In Paris' Latin Quarter just before an interview
In Paris' Latin Quarter just before an interview

There's a list of the remaining interviews on the filing cabinet. When I got back from Paris, there were ten interviews left. Now, there are thirteen. 

Meanwhile, I've gathered a lot more material. Attended an Ethiopian church service during their vegan advent fast. Met a couple of interviewees whose interviews I'll need to finish. The first episode script and audio is coming together. There's a real thrill to hearing human-animal interaction expert James Serpell's descriptions of how nomadic foragers talk about other animals in the same form that you're going to hear it in episode one.

And in my last trip for this series, I've done some interviews in Paris. Although contemporary Paris doesn't have the same vegan scene as Berlin or London, during the eighteenth century its cafes reverberated to philosophical arguments that included the role of animals; a couple of the footsoldiers of the revolution wanted to liberate the animals too. In the aftermath of the revolution, self-declared Pythagoreans eschewed flesh and donned ancient Greek garb. 

Swapping my flat with a friend meant that the time pressure wasn't as mad as it had been in India, so I had a chance to re-read the research and prepare my questions more. 

At the same time I was in Paris, so was Renan Larue, promoting the first French-language history of vegetarianism, "Le végétarisme et ses ennemis" (Vegetarianism and its enemies). He was on national TV's book show, and if you speak French you can watch the interview

The Eurostar let me take my bicycle on as hand luggage and (weather permitting) use it instead of paying for metro tickets. This was fine until I tried to cycle with a baguette. Apparently, that's what sorts out the real Parisians from the pretenders. I tried to balance it on my bike, missed my turning, and tipped over the kerb, ripped my jeans, and bashed my knee. At least the audio recorder was safe. 

Thanks in particular to my flat-swapping friend Elisabeth Lyman, who has been helping me enormously with French, and to Vincent Migeotte who volunteered as fixer, helping me gain access to guests and places I would never have otherwise have been able to contact. For example, I met leading experts in Jean-Jacques Rousseau in the very house where Rousseau wrote the book that inspired a generation of vegetarian children at the turn of the nineteenth century. 

There's going to be a lot of editing to do ...
Dashboard as of 9 Mar 2015
Dashboard as of 9 Mar 2015
 
Martin Taylor, Elisabeth B, and 5 more people like this update.

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    1. Demetrius on April 8, 2015

      Love this. The adventures of interview the various people is a tale unto its own it seems!!