ISBN is

978-0-87745-920-0 / 9780877459200

Botanical Companions: A Memoir of Plants and Place (American Land & Life)

by

Publisher:University Of Iowa Press

Edition:Hardcover

Language:English

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About the book:

In her luminous inquiry into the intricate connections among work, place, and people, Frieda Knobloch explores the lives of two Rocky Mountain botanists, Aven Nelson (1859-1952) and Ruth Ashton Nelson (1896-1987). Aven was a professor of botany at the University of Wyoming for many years; Ruth compiled field guides to Rocky Mountain plants and wrote articles on botany for magazines. The two met and married when Aven was in his seventies and Ruth was in her mid thirties, and they developed a symbiotic partnership that joined work and play, learning and companionship. Into this relatively straightforward reconstruction of two lives Knobloch blends the history of her own life as a scholar and an amateur naturalist, her own journal entries, and her letters written to Ruth to create a transformative environmental auto/biography. Moving back and forth smoothly between different voices and forms, Knobloch makes a strong case for the ways in which the interests and pleasures - what she calls the matters of the heart - that motivate researchers shape the knowledge they produce. With a paradigm-breaking, cross-disciplinary combination of scholarly craft and literary nonfiction, she has written a prose poem dedicated to the nature of work and the work of nature. Botanical Companions is a bold and lively reworking of academic genres that will intrigue readers interested in environmental history, ecocriticism, cultural studies, American studies, and the natural history of the Rocky Mountain West.

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