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Academic & Professional Books  History & Other Humanities  History of Science & Nature

Flora's Fieldworkers Women and Botany in Nineteenth-Century Canada

New
By: Ann Shteir(Editor), Suzanne Zeller(Afterword by)
477 pages, 32 plates with colour photos and colour illustrations; 87 b/w photos and b/w illustrations, 2 tables
Flora's Fieldworkers
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  • Flora's Fieldworkers ISBN: 9780228011125 Hardback Aug 2022 Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks
    £47.99
    #257194
Price: £47.99
About this book Contents Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

When Catharine Parr Traill came to Upper Canada in 1832 as a settler from England, she brought along with her ties to British botanical culture. Nonetheless, when she arrived she encountered a new natural landscape and, like other women chronicled in this book, set out to advance the botanical knowledge of the time from the Canadian field.

Flora's Fieldworkers employs biography, botanical data, herbaria specimens, archival sources, letters, institutional records, book history, and abundant artwork to reconstruct the ways in which women studied and understood plants in the nineteenth century. It features figures ranging from elite women involved in imperial botanical projects in British North America to settler-colonial women in Ontario and Australia – most of whom were scarcely visible in the historical record – who were active in "plant work" as collectors, writers, artists, craft workers, teachers, and organizers. Understood as an appropriate pastime for genteel ladies, botany offered women pathways to scientific education, financial autonomy, and self-expression.

The call for more diverse voices in the present must look to the past as well. Bringing botany to historians and historians to botany, Flora's Fieldworkers gathers compelling material about women in colonial and imperial Canada and Australia to take a new look at how we came to know what we know about plants.

Contents

Acknowledgments   vii
Introduction: Women and Plant Practices in Nineteenth-Century Canada beyond “the Usual Records” / Ann Shteir   3

Part One: Approaching Lady Dalhousie: New Resources, New Perspectives
1 A Botanical Journey of Discovery: Lady Dalhousie in British North America / Deborah Reid   37
2 Lady Dalhousie’s Orchids and Other Rare Plants in Lower Canada, 1820-1828: Resources for Historical Study / Jacques Cayouette and Faye-Yin Khoo   70
3 Gender, Botany, and Imperial Networks: Reflections on a Letter / Virginia Vandenberg   100

Part Two: Collecting and Its Contexts
4 “I dare not say Botanical … Mine is a real love for flowers”: Mary Brenton in 1830s Newfoundland / Ann Shteir   133
5 Baron Ferdinand von Mueller’s Plant Collectors: At Home with the Australian Flora / Sara Maroske   158
6 Alice Hollingworth, Early Botanical Explorer in Muskoka District, Ontario / James Pringle   186

Part Three: Natural History “Old” and “New”
7 Catharine Parr Traill: A Natural Historian in Changing Times / Michael Peterman   217
8 “Botany … a Prominent Study”: Isabella McIntosh’s Ferns and Natural History in 1860s Montreal / Karen Stanworth   247

Part Four: Seeing and Making
9 Botanical Albums as Theoretical Objects: Sophie Pemberton and the Logic of Identity / Kristina Huneault   281
10 Slips and Seeds: Botany and Horticulture in Two Nineteenth-Century Canadian Quilts / Vanessa Nicholas   320

Part Five: Expanding Public Practices
11 Botanical Gardens in Nineteenth-Century Canada: Individuals and Institutions / David Galbraith   347
12 Women, Citizen Science, and Botanical Knowledge in Ontario, 1870-1920 / Dawn R. Bazely and Kathryn McPherson   378

Afterword: Finding Meaning in the Understory / Suzanne Zeller   403

Tables and Figures   415
Contributors   423
Index   427

Customer Reviews

Biography

Ann Shteir is a professor emerita and senior scholar in gender, feminist, and women’s studies at York University.

New
By: Ann Shteir(Editor), Suzanne Zeller(Afterword by)
477 pages, 32 plates with colour photos and colour illustrations; 87 b/w photos and b/w illustrations, 2 tables
Media reviews

"Refreshingly interdisciplinary, Flora's Fieldworkers is replete with new information and insights, even on known figures like Dalhousie and Traill. The volume offers innovative perspectives on women's involvement in botany and plant culture, making strides in the historiography on science in Canada and the fields of women, gender, and science."
– Donald L. Opitz, DePaul University

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