The Secret Life of Plants – Tompkins and Bird by

The Secret Life of Plants (1973) is a book by Peter Tompkins and Christopher Bird. The book, which is generally regarded as a pseudo-scientific work, discusses the alleged unusual phenomena regarding plants such as plant sentience, as well as alternative philosophy and alternative farming methods.The book was the basis for the 1979 documentary of the same name directed by Walon Green and featuring a soundtrack by Stevie Wonder, later released as Journey trough the secret life of plants. 

These theories transcend science and proof, and, for the extend of my research, will be understood as a philosophical approach towards interaction between human and nature. The perpetual consciousness towards nature is something that should not be tried to be explained as a scientific matter (if it can not be proven), but maybe there is a space for cultural or artistic ways of understanding ourselves and our original place as a species in this world. I see in this way all the experiments done in the documentary and the book.

It is interesting deriving for my project the way persons perceive natural components in their life. There are human interactions with nature that can be tangible. Like the act of having dogs or houseplants. Even in the most dense cities people have pets and plants, and these are volunteer actions in which we’ve looked for and achieved a way of creating micro habitats for natural components. In my opinion we have been successful. These “secrets” are not that invisible anymore, when we see it that way.

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REFLECTION- 1. On “The Man who planted Trees” by Jean Giono

the man who book

Last month I began my journey to find inspiration and texts for my thesis project. Even though the understanding of a scientific exploration is clear, I have started my research in the poetic or magical part of understanding nature. This mind of thought was an exercise started in Alejandro Tamayo’s workshop “Nature and Technology”, which I found very interesting as a point of birth.

Alfonso Borragan handed me this piece of text  called “The Man who planted Trees” by Jean Giono. After reading it I understood it was perfect to start my reflections towards the intervention of human hand in nature. The text is very famous and has been translated into 15 languages. It’s certain that the story is product of the author’s mind, but, the context and time in which it was written determines effectively that what happens in the story could be true. Not that it was true but that, again, it could be true in a “magical” or mysterious way.

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