Norman Riley

Assistant Lecturer
Department of Sociology
Postgraduate Research Student
Department of Sociology
 Norman Riley


Ask me about
  • Consumption, Veganism, Class and Masculinity
  • Non-human Animals and Speciesism
  • Football (soccer) and social class


I am interested in perceptions of veganism and Nonhuman animals in working-class communities. I am from such a community. I have a multi-disciplinary background in languages, international relations, human rights, and sociology. My MSc dissertation explored Thatcherite social housing policy through a human rights framework and my MA dissertation looked at representations of vegans/veganism in UK national newspapers. An edited version of the MA dissertation has subsequently been published as an article in the Journal for Critical Animal Studies. I have worked in a voluntary capacity with The Refugee Council, Helen Bamber Foundation, Community Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers, and Detention Action. I give cookery demos and talks on veganism at state comprehensive schools for Animal Aid and produce the Football and Society podcast. Publication: Riley NG (2022) PC-ravaged clowns or plant-powered pioneers? UK newspaper portrayals of veganism in 2020. Journal for Critical Animal Studies. 19(2): 53-83.


  • MA Sociological Research Methods University of Essex (2021)

  • MSc Human Rights London School of Economics and Political Sciences (2018)

  • Postgraduate Certificate International Relations Staffordshire University (2012)

  • BA (Hons) Modern Languages University of Essex (2005)

Research and professional activities


Potentialities for vegan transitions in a UK working-class community [working title]

A transition to a plant-based diet has been described by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as major opportunity for reducing the severity of and adapting to climate change. I explore to what extent such statements resonate in a working-class community in the United Kingdom and whether there is an appetite for and realistic chance of such demands being met. I am attempting to gain an understanding of people's knowledge of, and feelings toward, plant-based lifestyles and

Supervisor: Dr Katy Wheeler , Professor Sean Nixon

Research interests

Consumption, Nonhuman Animals, veganism and class



Colchester Campus