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Author Nealon, Jeffrey T. (Jeffrey Thomas), author

Title Plant theory : biopower and vegetable life / Jeffrey T. Nealon
Published Stanford, California : Stanford University Press, [2016]
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource (166 pages)
Contents Preface : plant theory? -- The first birth of biopower : from plant to animal life in Foucault -- Thinking plants, with Aristotle and Heidegger -- Animal and plant, life and world in Derrida, or, The plant and the sovereign -- From the world to the territory : vegetable life in Deleuze and Guattari, or, What is a rhizome? -- Coda : what difference does it make?
Notes This book joins the growing philosophical literature on vegetable life to ask what changes in our present humanities debates about biopower and Animal Studies if we take plants as a linchpin for thinking about biopolitics. Logically enough, the book uses Animal Studies as a way into the debate, but it does so in unexpected ways. Upending approaches that present as critiques of biopolitical regimes, it argues that it is plants rather than animals that are the forgotten and abjected forms of life under humanist biopower. Indeed, biopolitical theory has consistently sidestepped the issue of vegetable life, and more recently, been outright hostile to it. Provocatively, Nealon wonders whether Animal Studies, which have taken the "inventor" of biopower himself to task for speciesism, have not themselves misread Foucault, thereby managing to extend humanist biopower rather than to curb its reach. And he is interested in how and why this is the case. In an effort to imagine new futures for the ongoing biopolitical debate, Plant Theory turns to several other thinkers of the high theory generation in a quest for continuities, ruptures, and roads not taken in the recent theoretical past
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Biopolitics.
Plants -- Philosophy.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 0804796785 (electronic bk.)
9780804796781 (electronic bk.)