the cabaret of plants forty thousand years of plant life and the human imagination

Download Book The Cabaret Of Plants Forty Thousand Years Of Plant Life And The Human Imagination in PDF format. You can Read Online The Cabaret Of Plants Forty Thousand Years Of Plant Life And The Human Imagination here in PDF, EPUB, Mobi or Docx formats.

The Cabaret Of Plants

Author : Richard Mabey
ISBN : 9781847654014
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 68. 59 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download : 317
Read : 351

Download Now


In The Cabaret of Plants, Mabey explores the plant species which have challenged our imaginations, awoken our wonder, and upturned our ideas about history, science, beauty and belief. Picked from every walk of life, they encompass crops, weeds, medicines, religious gathering-places and a water lily named after a queen. Beginning with pagan cults and creation myths, the cultural significance of plants has burst upwards, sprouting into forms as diverse as the panacea (the cure-all plant ginseng, a single root of which can cost up to $10,000), Newton's apple, the African 'vegetable elephant' or boabab - and the mystical, night-flowering Amazonian cactus, the moonflower. Ranging widely across science, art and cultural history, poetry and personal experience, Mabey puts plants centre stage, and reveals a true botanical cabaret, a world of tricksters, shape-shifters and inspired problem-solvers, as well as an enthralled audience of romantics, eccentric amateur scientists and transgressive artists. The Cabaret of Plants celebrates the idea that plants are not simply 'the furniture of the planet', but vital, inventive, individual beings worthy of respect - and that to understand this may be the best way of preserving life together on Earth.

The Cabaret Of Plants Forty Thousand Years Of Plant Life And The Human Imagination

Author : Richard Mabey
ISBN : 9780393248777
Genre : Science
File Size : 53. 88 MB
Format : PDF
Download : 595
Read : 1323

Download Now


"Highly entertaining…Without being sentimental about it, Mr. Mabey gets us to look at life from the plants' point of view. His science is sound, he's witty, and his language is engaging." —Constance Casey, New York Times The Cabaret of Plants is a masterful, globe-trotting exploration of the relationship between humans and the kingdom of plants by the renowned naturalist Richard Mabey. A rich, sweeping, and wonderfully readable work of botanical history, The Cabaret of Plants explores dozens of plant species that for millennia have challenged our imaginations, awoken our wonder, and upturned our ideas about history, science, beauty, and belief. Going back to the beginnings of human history, Mabey shows how flowers, trees, and plants have been central to human experience not just as sources of food and medicine but as objects of worship, actors in creation myths, and symbols of war and peace, life and death. Writing in a celebrated style that the Economist calls “delightful and casually learned,” Mabey takes readers from the Himalayas to Madagascar to the Amazon to our own backyards. He ranges through the work of writers, artists, and scientists such as da Vinci, Keats, Darwin, and van Gogh and across nearly 40,000 years of human history: Ice Age images of plant life in ancient cave art and the earliest representations of the Garden of Eden; Newton’s apple and gravity, Priestley’s sprig of mint and photosynthesis, and Wordsworth’s daffodils; the history of cultivated plants such as maize, ginseng, and cotton; and the ways the sturdy oak became the symbol of British nationhood and the giant sequoia came to epitomize the spirit of America. Complemented by dozens of full-color illustrations, The Cabaret of Plants is the magnum opus of a great naturalist and an extraordinary exploration of the deeply interwined history of humans and the natural world.

Flora Britannica

Author : Richard Mabey
ISBN : UCSD:31822023590367
Genre : Nature
File Size : 55. 43 MB
Format : PDF
Download : 896
Read : 1154

Download Now


This landmark guide offers a comprehensive survey of the native and naturalized wild plants of England, Scotland, and Wales. Useful and delightful, it covers 1,000 species, including trees and ferns. More than a definitive work of natural history, however, it is also a virtual encyclopedia of living folklore, recording the role of wild plants in social life, the arts, customs, and landscapes. The information has been supplied by the people themselves, creating a unique national record of the popular culture, domestic uses, and social meanings of Britain's wild plants. Splendidly written by naturalist Richard Mabey and illustrated with 500 fine color photographs, Flora Britannica is an elegant testimony to the continuing relationship between nature and man.

Nature Cure

Author : Richard Mabey
ISBN : 0813926211
Genre : Nature
File Size : 78. 2 MB
Format : PDF, Kindle
Download : 889
Read : 192

Download Now


"Mabey fears that he, like the swift, may be too specialized - given to an intensely specific way of life which, when threatened, leaves him with nowhere to turn. A life spent observing nature has taught him that any creature, even an entire species, might be made suddenly obsolete by the shifts of the world. Just how adaptable is he? He leaves the Chilterns with a near-complete set of the works of John Clare and an antique microscope, but without a frying pan. From now on he will have to think about a complete life, not just those bases he touched as a writer following his calling.".

Green Desire

Author : Rebecca W. Bushnell
ISBN : 0801441439
Genre : Gardening
File Size : 88. 75 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Docs
Download : 342
Read : 1189

Download Now


For Rebecca Bushnell, English gardening books tell a fascinating tale of the human love for plants and our will to make them do as we wish. These books powerfully evoke the desires of gardeners: they show us gardeners who, like poets, imagine not just what is but what should be. In particular, the earliest English garden books, such as Thomas Hill's The Gardeners Labyrinth or Hugh Platt's Floraes Paradise, mix magical practices with mundane recipes even when the authors insist that they rely completely on their own experience in these matters. Like early modern "books of secrets," early gardening manuals often promise the reader power to alter the essential properties of plants: to make the gillyflower double, to change the lily's hue, or to grow a cherry without a stone. Green Desire describes the innovative design of the old manuals, examining how writers and printers marketed them as fiction as well as practical advice for aspiring gardeners. Along with this attention to the delights of reading, it analyzes the strange dignity and pleasure of garden labor and the division of men's and women's roles in creating garden art. The book ends by recounting the heated debate over how much people could do to create marvels in their own gardens. For writers and readers alike, these green desires inspired dreams of power and self-improvement, fantasies of beauty achieved without work, and hopes for order in an unpredictable world—not so different from the dreams of gardeners today.

Hamburgers In Paradise

Author : Louise O. Fresco
ISBN : 9781400873319
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 59. 26 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Docs
Download : 574
Read : 962

Download Now


For the first time in human history, there is food in abundance throughout the world. More people than ever before are now freed of the struggle for daily survival, yet few of us are aware of how food lands on our plates. Behind every meal you eat, there is a story. Hamburgers in Paradise explains how. In this wise and passionate book, Louise Fresco takes readers on an enticing cultural journey to show how science has enabled us to overcome past scarcities—and why we have every reason to be optimistic about the future. Using hamburgers in the Garden of Eden as a metaphor for the confusion surrounding food today, she looks at everything from the dominance of supermarkets and the decrease of biodiversity to organic foods and GMOs. She casts doubt on many popular claims about sustainability, and takes issue with naïve rejections of globalization and the idealization of "true and honest" food. Fresco explores topics such as agriculture in human history, poverty and development, and surplus and obesity. She provides insightful discussions of basic foods such as bread, fish, and meat, and intertwines them with social topics like slow food and other gastronomy movements, the fear of technology and risk, food and climate change, the agricultural landscape, urban food systems, and food in art. The culmination of decades of research, Hamburgers in Paradise provides valuable insights into how our food is produced, how it is consumed, and how we can use the lessons of the past to design food systems to feed all humankind in the future.

The Ash And The Beech

Author : Richard Mabey
ISBN : 9781448189823
Genre : Nature
File Size : 85. 53 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download : 791
Read : 276

Download Now


From ash die-back to the Great Storm of 1987 to Dutch elm disease, our much-loved woodlands seem to be under constant threat from a procession of natural challenges. Just when we need trees most, to help combat global warming and to provide places of retreat for us and our wildlife, they seem at greatest peril. But these dangers force us to reconsider the narrative we construct about trees and the roles we press on them. In this now classic book, Richard Mabey looks at how, for more than a thousand years, we have appropriated and humanised trees, turning them into arboreal pets, status symbols, expressions of fashionable beauty - anything rather than allow them lives of their own. And in the poetic and provocative style he has made his signature, Mabey argues that respecting trees' independence and ancient powers of survival may be the wisest response to their current crises. Originally published with the title Beechcombings, this updated edition includes a new foreword and afterword by the author.

Top Download:

Best Books