Sociologist Dr. Roger Yates has an activist background. He has been a vegan grass roots campaigner since 1979 when he joined the Hunt Saboteurs Association (HSA). He took part in the radicalization of the BUAV (British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection) which, along with the formation of Animal Aid, is credited with revitalizing the British animal advocacy movement. He began a number of "action groups" in the early 1980s, including the Fur Action Group, Hazleton Action Group, and Edelson Action Group and was a Sea Shepherd activist against seal killing in the Orkney Islands. He was a member of the Northern Animal Liberation League (NALL) which pioneered large-scale "inspections" of animal use facilities, and was the Animal Liberation Front`s (ALF) Northern Press Officer in the mid-1980s, which led to him spending 4 years in jail after being a defendant in the show trial that saw Ronnie Lee receive a 10 year prison term. Roger opened the first ever "animal rights shop" in Liverpool and was involved in regular actions against the infamous "Waterloo Cup" hare coursing event and North of England grouse shooting. He started the Federation of Local Animal Rights Groups which aimed to recover money held in national organizations and return it to the grass roots movement, and founded the Rescued Animal Sanctuary Fund to locate homes for ALF-rescued animals.
Dr. Yates is now a sociologist, and has taught critical theory and social movements & protest, while exploring what he calls "human-nonhuman relations" in blogs and podcasts. Research interests include social movements, their relationships with the state, countermovements, and the mass media. His academic work has been described as "non-speciesist zemiology" (the study of harm). His MA dissertation was about the British animal advocacy movement, while his Ph.D explored the social construction of speciesism, focusing on philosophy, theology, and everyday social practices. Recent publications include "Rituals of Dominionism in Human-Nonhuman Relations" in Journal for Critical Animal Studies, "Language, Power, and Speciesism" in Critical Society, and "Criminalizing protests about animal abuse: Recent Irish experience in global context" in Crime, Law and Social Change.