These essays by Eva Batt (1908-1989) offer a fascinating glimpse into the history of veganism. Batt, a resident of England, became vegan in 1954, just ten years after the term was coined. She recounted this experience, which involved a face to face encounter with a cow recently robbed of her calf, in "Confessions of a Very Slow Starter". In an earlier piece, "Why Veganism?", she reviewed the history of veganism, offered a definition of the term, and discussed various moral and practical aspects of living as a vegan.
In the years following her ‘slow start’, Batt made major contributions to the spread of veganism. She was a highly active member of the Vegan Society who served fifteen years as chairperson and edited the commodity pages of The Vegan for over two decades. The society published her two cookbooks: "What's Cooking" (1973) and "What Else is Cooking" (1983). Batt was a council member of the American Vegan Society and director of Plamil, which began selling a canned soy milk concentrate in 1965. She also worked with Beauty Without Cruelty, a charitable trust that promoted cosmetics and clothing not derived from or tested on animals. She even owned a shop in Enfield, her hometown, that sold food, clothing, and footwear suited for vegans.