Vegetal Sex: Philosophy of Plants // Stella Sandford
Bloomsbury, 2022, 256 pages
A radical new philosophy of plants that asks us to take vegetal sex and what it might mean for us seriously.
In recent years philosophers, botanists and mycologists have drawn our attention to the complexities of plant and fungal life. They have taught us why plants are better thought as colonies than individuals and how animal-centred ways of thinking fail to capture what is peculiar and perhaps admirable in vegetal life. They have taught us to appreciate the temporality and intricacy of vegetal existence and suggested how relations between plants might provide us with non-individualistic models of coexistence. But they have not, as yet, taught us much - if anything - about vegetal sex.
This book introduces the reader to the exciting new field of plant philosophy and takes it in a new direction to ask: what does it mean to say that plants are sexed? Do male and female really mean the same when applied to humans, trees, mushrooms and algae? Are the zoological categories of sex really adequate for understanding the uniquely dibiontic life cycle of plants?
Vegetal Sex addresses these questions through a detailed analysis of major moments in the history of plant sex, from Aristotle to the modern day.
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