What are the links between people’s beliefs and the foods they choose to eat? In the modern Western world, dietary choices are a topic of ethical and political debate, but how can centuries of Christian thought and practice also inform them? And how do reasons for abstaining from particular foods in the modern world compare with earlier ones? This book will shed new light on modern vegetarianism and related forms of dietary choice by situating them in the context of historic Christian practice. It will show how the theological significance of embodied practice may be retrieved and reconceived in the present day.
Food and diet is a neglected area of Christian theology, and Christianity is conspicuous among the modern world’s religions in having few dietary rules or customs. Yet historically, food and the practices surrounding it have significantly shaped Christian lives and identities. This collection, prepared collaboratively, includes contributions on the relationship between Christian beliefs and food practices in specific historical contexts. It considers the relationship between eating and believing from non-Christian perspectives that have in turn shaped Christian attitudes and practices. It also examines ethical arguments about vegetarianism and their significance for emerging Christian theologies of food.