The Disciplines Series

Botanically Queer

Thursday, March 27, 2014  4:30pm The Heyman Center, Second Floor Common Room


Institute for Research on Women and Gender

Heyman Center for the Humanities

The Earth Institute

Plants have been profoundly queer players in the modern project of describing "life" for ethical and political consideration. From their taxonomic destabilizations of colonial order in the eighteenth century to their current questionings concerning agency in recent posthumanist discourses, plants demand that we think about living, being, and becoming in ways that interrupt anthropocentric and heteronormative figurings of ethics, agency, futurity, and life in general. In this presentation, Catriona Sandilands, an internationally recognized scholar in both queer ecologies and plant studies, will speak about "botanical queerness" with an eye to thinking through the complexity of humans' relations to plants beyond habitual environmentalist modes of address. Plants are not simply objects of human concern; they offer up modes of being. becoming, living, and futurity that have been overlooked in many more animal-centric accounts, and that may serve as the basis of a more critical, queer, and ecological understanding of life in relation to power.


  • Catriona Sandilands

    Professor and Canada Research Chair in Sustainability and Culture

    York University


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