310 pages, no illustrations
Becoming Animal is an 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 have inured ourselves to the wild intelligence of our flesh, taking our primary truths from technologies that hold the living world at a distance. Becoming Animal subverts that distance, drawing readers ever deeper into their animal senses in order to explore, from within, the elemental kinship between the body and the breathing Earth. The author shows that from the awakened perspective of the human animal, awareness (or mind) is not an exclusive possession of our species but a lucid quality of the biosphere itself, a quality in which we, along with the oaks and the spiders, steadily participate.
"An intricately textured, deep breath of a book that blurs the boundaries between human and animal, mind and earth."
"A wild book in every sense of the word, full of stories that will leave you trembling, but even fuller of ideas that will send you out into the world with new eyes."
– Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth
"I cannot imagine another book that so gently and so persuasively alters how we look at ourselves."
– Richard Louv, author of The Nature Principle
"One of the most compelling and important ecology books in decades."
– Rex Weyler, co-founder of Greenpeace International
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David Abram is an ecologist, anthropologist, and philosopher who lectures and teaches widely around the world. His prior book, The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-than-Human World, helped catalyze the emergence of several new disciplines, including the burgeoning field of ecopsychology. The recipient of a Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction, David was named by both the Utne Reader and the British journal Resurgence as one of a hundred visionaries transforming contemporary culture. His writings on the cultural causes and consequences of environmental disarray are published in numerous magazines, scholarly journals, and anthologies. A co-founder of the Alliance for Wild Ethics (AWE), David lives with his family in the foothills of the southern Rockies.