The Spell of the Sensuous

Author: David Abram
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307830551
Format: PDF, ePub
Download Now
Winner of the International Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction Animal tracks, word magic, the speech of stones, the power of letters, and the taste of the wind all figure prominently in this intellectual tour de force that returns us to our senses and to the sensuous terrain that sustains us. This major work of ecological philosophy startles the senses out of habitual ways of perception. For a thousand generations, human beings viewed themselves as part of the wider community of nature, and they carried on active relationships not only with other people with other animals, plants, and natural objects (including mountains, rivers, winds, and weather patters) that we have only lately come to think of as "inanimate." How, then, did humans come to sever their ancient reciprocity with the natural world? What will it take for us to recover a sustaining relation with the breathing earth? In The Spell of the Sensuous David Abram draws on sources as diverse as the philosophy of Merleau-Ponty, Balinese shamanism, Apache storytelling, and his own experience as an accomplished sleight-of-hand of magician to reveal the subtle dependence of human cognition on the natural environment. He explores the character of perception and excavates the sensual foundations of language, which--even at its most abstract--echoes the calls and cries of the earth. On every page of this lyrical work, Abram weaves his arguments with a passion, a precision, and an intellectual daring that recall such writers as Loren Eisleley, Annie Dillard, and Barry Lopez.

Becoming Animal

Author: David Abram
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307379310
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
David Abram’s first book, The Spell of the Sensuous has become a classic of environmental literature. Now he returns with a startling exploration of our human entanglement with the rest of nature. As the climate veers toward catastrophe, the innumerable losses cascading through the biosphere make vividly evident the need for a metamorphosis in our relation to the living land. For too long we’ve ignored the wild intelligence of our bodies, taking our primary truths from technologies that hold the living world at a distance. Abram’s writing subverts this distance, drawing readers ever closer to their animal senses in order to explore, from within, the elemental kinship between the human body and the breathing Earth. The shape-shifting of ravens, the erotic nature of gravity, the eloquence of thunder, the pleasures of being edible: all have their place in this book.

Lived Topographies and Their Mediational Forces

Author: Gary Backhaus
Publisher: Lexington Books
ISBN: 9780739105764
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
This collection explores the various forms of narrative, semiotic, and technological mediation that shape the experience of place. Gary Backhaus and John Murungi have assembled a wide array of scholars who give a unique perspective on the phenomenology of place.

What the Whole World Is Saying

Author: Sarah Dilling
Publisher: Lennex
ISBN: 9785458937733
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download Now
In this book, we have hand-picked the most sophisticated, unanticipated, absorbing (if not at times crackpot!), original and musing book reviews of "The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World." Don't say we didn't warn you: these reviews are known to shock with their unconventionality or intimacy. Some may be startled by their biting sincerity; others may be spellbound by their unbridled flights of fantasy. Don't buy this book if: 1. You don't have nerves of steel. 2. You expect to get pregnant in the next five minutes. 3. You've heard it all.

The Distressed Body

Author: Drew Leder
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022639610X
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Download Now
Returning to some of the issues in his now classic book The Absent Body published by this Press in 1990, philosopher and physician Drew Leder turns his attention in his new book to distressed bodies the experience of illness and pain, and a variety of medical responses thereto; the experience of being imprisoned in our age of mass incarceration; and also the mis-treatment of animal bodies, as in modern factory farms. Yet this book is not just about suffering, but the healing of suffering. Each chapter takes up a single topic -- be it the experience of pain, the use of pills in medicine, organ transplantation, or factory farming employing interpretive tools appropriate to the issue. At the same time, the book clarifies for the reader how each chapter connects to and builds upon previous material. After a general Introduction, the book s first section is called Illness and Treatment: Phenomenological Investigations. It uses phenomenological methods, largely, though not exclusively, to examine what is it to be ill or in pain, and how modern medicine does and could -- respond. This leads us into Section Two of the book, Medicine and Bioethics: Hermeneutical Reflections. In this section, Leder uses tools explicitly and implicitly drawn from figures like Heidegger and Gadamer. Up to now the focus has been on the ill body and its treatment by the medical system. But this is far from the only sort of distressed body. In Section Three, Discarded and Recovered Bodies Leder reveals striking parallels between the lifeworlds of animals and prisoners. This stunning collection of essays showcases Leder s powerful and imaginative intellect."

Participatory Research in More than Human Worlds

Author: Michelle Bastian
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1317340884
Format: PDF, Kindle
Download Now
Socio-environmental crises are currently transforming the conditions for life on this planet, from climate change, to resource depletion, biodiversity loss and long-term pollutants. The vast scale of these changes, affecting land, sea and air have prompted calls for the ‘ecologicalisation’ of knowledge. This book adopts a much needed ‘more-than-human’ framework to grasp these complexities and challenges. It contains multidisciplinary insights and diverse methodological approaches to question how to revise, reshape and invent methods in order to work with non-humans in participatory ways. The book offers a framework for thinking critically about the promises and potentialities of participation from within a more-than-human paradigm, and opens up trajectories for its future development. It will be of interest to those working in the environmental humanities, animal studies, science and technology studies, ecology, and anthropology.

Phenomenological Approaches to Popular Culture

Author: Michael Thomas Carroll
Publisher: Popular Press
ISBN: 9780879728106
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Download Now
Within popular culture studies, one finds discussions about quantitative sociology, Marxism, psychoanalysis, myth criticism, feminism, and semiotics, but hardly a word on the usefulness of phenomenology, the branch of philosophy concerned with human experience. In spite of this omission, there is a close relationship between the aims of phenomenology and the aims of popular culture studies, for both movements have attempted to redirect academic study toward everyday lived experience. The fifteen essays in this volume demonstrate the way in which phenomenological approaches can illuminate popular culture studies, and in so doing they take on the entire range of popular culture.

Being Animal

Author: Anna L. Peterson
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231534264
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
If nature is what lies beyond human society, then animals must be a part of it. For most people, animals are the most significant aspects of the nonhuman world. They symbolize nature in our imaginations, in popular media and culture, and in campaigns to preserve the wilderness. They are also real creatures and individual subjects with whom we have diverse and complex relationships Scholars, however, tend to treat animals and the environment as distinct, mutually exclusive objects of interest and concern. Conducting the first systematic examination of the place of animals in scholarly and popular thinking about nature, Anna L. Peterson builds a nature ethic that conceives of nonhuman animals as active subjects simultaneously a part of nature and human society. Disrupting the artificial boundaries separating these two realms, Peterson explores the tensions between humans and animals, nature and culture, animals and nature, and domesticity and wildness, and she uses our intimate connections with companion animals to examine nature more broadly. Liminal creatures who straddle the boundary between human society and wilderness, companion animals reveal much about the mutually constitutive relationships binding humans and nature together. Through her paradigm-shifting reflections on animals, nature, and ethics, Peterson underscores the fluid and continuous character of two seemingly immutable categories.

The Blue Sapphire of the Mind

Author: Douglas E. Christie
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199986649
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Download Now
"There are no unsacred places," the poet Wendell Berry has written. "There are only sacred places and desecrated places." What might it mean to behold the world with such depth and feeling that it is no longer possible to imagine it as something separate from ourselves, or to live without regard for its well-being? To understand the work of seeing things as an utterly involving moral and spiritual act? Such questions have long occupied the center of contemplative spiritual traditions. In The Blue Sapphire of the Mind, Douglas E. Christie proposes a distinctively contemplative approach to ecological thought and practice that can help restore our sense of the earth as a sacred place. Drawing on the insights of the early Christian monastics as well as the ecological writings of Henry David Thoreau, Aldo Leopold, Annie Dillard, and many others, Christie argues that, at the most basic level, it is the quality of our attention to the natural world that must change if we are to learn how to live in a sustainable relationship with other living organisms and with one another. He notes that in this uniquely challenging historical moment, there is a deep and pervasive hunger for a less fragmented and more integrated way of apprehending and inhabiting the living world--and for a way of responding to the ecological crisis that expresses our deepest moral and spiritual values. Christie explores how the wisdom of ancient and modern contemplative traditions can inspire both an honest reckoning with the destructive patterns of thought and behavior that have contributed so much to our current crisis, and a greater sense of care and responsibility for all living beings. These traditions can help us cultivate the simple, spacious awareness of the enduring beauty and wholeness of the natural world that will be necessary if we are to live with greater purpose and meaning, and with less harm, to our planet.

The Memory of Nature in Aboriginal Canadian and American Contexts

Author: Françoise Besson
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
ISBN: 1443861618
Format: PDF, Mobi
Download Now
This volume engages the reader’s interest in the relationship that binds man to nature, a relationship which makes itself manifest through certain literary or visual artefacts produced by Native or non-Native writers and artists. It ranges from the study of literatures (mainly from Canada – including Quebec and Acadia – but also from Britain, the United States of America, France, Turkey, and Australia) to the exploration of films, photographs, paintings and sculptures produced by Aboriginal artists from North America. Thanks to a relational paradigm founded on spatial and temporal enlargement, it re-imagines the critical outlook on indigenous production by instigating a dialogue between endogenous and exogenous scholars, novelists and artists, and by weaving together interdisciplinary approaches spanning anthropology, geology, ecocriticism and the study of myths. From the writings by Scott Momaday to those by Tomson Highway, from Pauline Johnson to Louise Erdrich, or from the photographs by William McFarlane Notman and Edward Burtynsky or the films by Randy Redroad to the paintings by Emily Carr, it explores art as the sedimentation of nature. It simultaneously interrogates the representation of nature and the nature of representation as a geological and generic process inscribed in the history of mankind. Without eclipsing differences and imposing a reified Eurocentric critical discourse upon indigenous productions, this volume does not colonize indigenous texts or indulge in cultural appropriation of works of art, but looks for historical, mythological or geological traces of the past; a past characterized by the intimacy between man and animal, man and rock, or man and plant, a past which is allowed to resurface through the creative and critical outlooks that are bestowed upon its subjacent or subterranean existence. It resurfaces, not as nostalgic memory but as an interactive fertilization giving the present a new life in which the non-human provides a key to the understanding of the human bond to nature.