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Tree (Object Lessons)


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Table of Contents

Part One: Feral Trees The Tree of Heaven In a Dappled World A branching Heuristic Part Two: Garden and Forest In the Tree Museum From Ailanthus to Apple The Charter of the Forests Part Three: A Dark Abundance The Tree and/in History With and Without Us Notes Index

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Explores via art and literature our complicated material and economic entanglements with trees and their products.

About the Author

Matthew Battles is Associate Director of the metaLAB and Fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, USA. His previous publications include Library: an Unquiet History (2004), The Sovereignties of Invention (2012) and Library Beyond the Book (2014).


What astonishingly good writing! What a joy of a book. What a mind, this Matthew Battles. As he writes about trees, Battles could as well be describing his own wild mind: 'uncanny, possessed of depths and mystery, and feral in ways beyond my ken, . . . overspilling with dark abundance, . . . richly disruptive to one's daily commute.' * Kathleen Dean Moore, author of Great Tide Rising: Toward Clarity and Moral Courage in a Time of Planetary Change (2016) and Piano Tide: A Novel (2016) *
Battles ... shows how trees--and perhaps more importantly our relationships with trees--are incredibly complicated. Even dappling--that wonderful light that comes through a tree's leaves--is not as simple as it seems ... He makes clear that trees and their data have important stories to tell. That is if we let them. * PopMatters *

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