The article The vegetarian option: varieties,
conversions, motives and careers by Beardsworth and Keil may actually be the best source ever. It comes across as an almost mini-ethnography of vegetarians and vegans in a certain area of the UK, and has more information than I ever thought I would need.
The most relevant background information for my proposal might not be in the results, but in the methodology. Beardsworth and Keil used what they referred to as the “snowball method” in which they gathered participants for their study by reaching out through the social groups of the vegetarians or vegans that were already signed up. They relied on the social groups of vegans and vegetarians to get participants! This makes my hypothesis sound way more plausible!
Though this study was qualitative, Keil and Beardsworth developed and interesting scale from 1-6 which sort of measured how vegetarian a participant was. A type 1 vegetarian would occasionally eat meat (observing the hospitality clause or perhaps just indulging), while type 6 was totally plant-based. Although I wanted to study vegans exclusively, this may be beneficial in terms of how vegans define veganism.
Also, there was a substantial amount of qualitative data on social interactions of vegetarians/vegans and their families or other non-vegetarians. Which is again, super great information for my proposal.
This article is a great source of information and also a great read.