The Vegan Viewer in the Circum-Polar World; Or, J. H. Wheldon’s The Diana and Chase in the Arctic (1857)

  • Jason Edwards
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Animals and Literature book series (PSAAL)


“The Vegan Viewer in the Circum-Polar World” examines, in unprecedented detail, The Diana and Chase in the Arctic, a canvas by the little-known, early-nineteenth-century marine painter, James Wheldon, part of a local Hull School of painters focused upon depictions of Arctic whaling. The chapter contextualizes the iconography and materiality of the canvas within a broader discussion of the humanimal tragedy of Victorian whale hunting, as conceptualized, for the first time, by a specifically ethical vegan viewer, pondering not only how various animals are represented in the image, but might have contributed to its painting in the first place. The chapter concludes by pondering questions of violence: what kinds we, as vegans, must tolerate, and which we might find ourselves drawn to.



The chapter is dedicated to Diana Maltz, who had faith in it, when it needed it the most.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jason Edwards
    • 1
  1. 1.University of YorkYorkUK

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