344 pages, 10 colour & 76 b/w photos
A new approach to writing culture has arrived: multispecies ethnography. Plants, animals, fungi, and microbes appear alongside humans in this singular book about natural and cultural history. Anthropologists have collaborated with artists and biological scientists to illuminate how diverse organisms are entangled in political, economic, and cultural systems. Contributions from influential writers and scholars, such as Dorion Sagan, Karen Barad, Donna Haraway, and Anna Tsing, are featured along with essays by emergent artists and cultural anthropologists.
Delectable mushrooms flourishing in the aftermath of ecological disaster, microbial cultures enlivening the politics and value of food, and emergent life forms running wild in the age of biotechnology all figure in to this curated collection of essays and artefacts. Recipes provide instructions on how to cook acorn mush, make cheese out of human milk, and enliven forests after they have been clear-cut. The Multispecies Salon investigates messianic dreams, environmental nightmares, and modest sites of biocultural hope.
"This timely anthology offers a substantial and engaging introduction to the field of multispecies studies, clearly presenting the core concepts of an important and influential area of scholarship, which will become increasingly central to anthropology, science studies, environmental studies, and social theory. At the same time, The Multispecies Salon is in many ways an art book. It features an extraordinary range of remarkable art projects, which are fascinating in their own right and beautifully written up."
– Sarah Franklin, author of Biological Relatives: IVF, Stem Cells, and the Future of Kinship
"The Multispecies Salon is an ambitious, important book, an excellent read, full of energy and imagination. I teach art and anthropology courses, and this volume will be a key pedagogical text for me. I am certain that The Multispecies Salon will also be an attractive text in science studies, environmental anthropology, and cultural studies courses. It's an enthralling collection."
– George Marcus, coauthor of Designs for an Anthropology of the Contemporary
Introduction / Eben Kirksey, Craig Schuetze, and Stefan Helmreich
Part I. Blasted Landscapes
1. Hope in Blasted Landscapes / Eben Kirksey, Nicholas Shapiro, and Maria Brodine
R. A. W. Assmilk Soap / Karin Bolender
3. Blasted Landscapes (And the Gentle Arts of Mushroom Picking) / Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing, for the Matsutake Worlds Research Group
Part II. Edible Companions
Interlude. Microbiopolitics / Heather Paxson
Recipe 1. Plumpiñon / Lindsay Kelley
Recipe 2. Human Cheese / Miriam Sumin
Recipe 3. Multispecies Becoming / Eben Kirksey
Recipe 4. Bitter Medicine is Stronger / Linda Noel, Christine Hamilton, Anna Rodriguez, Angela James, Nathan Rich, David S. Edmunds, and Kim TallBear
4. Life Cycle of a Common Weed / Caitlin Berrigan
Part III. The Age of Biotechnology
5. Life in the Age of Biotechnology / Eben Kirksey, Brandon Costelleo-Kuehn, and Dorion Sagan
6. Invertebrate Visions: Diffractions of the Brittlestar / Karen Barad
7. Speculative Fabulations for Technoculture's Generations / Donna J. Haraway
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Eben Kirksey is a permanent faculty member in Environmental Humanities at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. He is the author of Freedom in Entangled Worlds: West Papua and the Global Architecture of Power, also published by Duke University Press.
- Karen Barad
- Caitlin Berrigan
- Karen Bolender
- Maria Brodine
- Brandon Costelloe-Kuehn
- David Edmonds
- Christine Hamilton
- Donna J. Haraway
- Stefan Helmreich
- Angela James
- Lindsay Kelley
- Nathan Rich
- Dorion Sagan
- Craig Schuetze
- Nicholas Shapiro
- Miriam Simun
- Kim Tallbear
- Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing