A Philosophy of Vegetal Life
The margins of philosophy are populated by non-human, non-animal living beings, including plants. While contemporary philosophers tend to refrain from raising ontological and ethical concerns with vegetal life, Michael Marder puts this life at the forefront of the current deconstruction of metaphysics. He identifies the existential features of plant behavior and the vegetal heritage of human thought so as to affirm the potential of vegetation to resist the logic of totalization and to exceed the narrow confines of instrumentality. Reconstructing the life of plants "after metaphysics," Marder focuses on their unique temporality, freedom, and material knowledge or wisdom. In his formulation, "plant-thinking" is the non-cognitive, non-ideational, and non-imagistic mode of thinking proper to plants, as much as the process of bringing human thought itself back to its roots and rendering it plantlike.
A superbly presented seminal work.... Highly recommended.
We owe Marder...a great debt for widening the contemporary philosophical discussion of life and ethics, taking it into the plant kingdom.
Jeffrey T. Nealon
Michael Marder's book Plant-Thinking is a timely contribution to the project of expanding ethical considerations to non-human beings.... This is a strong contribution to the post-metaphysical project.
Foreword by Gianni Vattimo and Santiago ZabalaAcknowledgmentsIntroduction: To Encounter the Plants . . . Part I. Vegetal Anti-MetaphysicsChapter 1. The Soul of the PlantChapter 2. The Body of the PlantPart II. Vegetal ExistentialityChapter 3. The Time of PlantsChapter 4. The Freedom of PlantsChapter 5. The Wisdom of PlantsEpilogue: The Ethical Offshoots of Plant-ThinkingNotesWorks CitedIndex
Read the introduction to Plant-Thinking (to view in full screen, click on icon in bottom right-hand corner)
SHORTLIST - 2014 Findlay Book Prize for Best Book of Metaphysics Published between 2010-13, the Metaphysical Society of America