Jared Farmer F'09
ACLS Fellowship Program 2009
State University of New York, Stony Brook
If Trees Could Speak: Botanical Dispatches from California
Using case studies of four iconic California trees—sequoias, eucalypts, oranges, and palms—this study explores the role of plants in human history, and the role of humans in plant history. It combines cultural and scientific approaches to the environment. Each tree genus is paired with a distinct discourse. With sequoias, the conversation begins with time, history, antiquity, and mortality. With eucalypts, the conversation turns to immigration, naturalization, nativeness, and alienness. With oranges, the conversation moves to science, technology, naturalness, and hybridity. Finally, with palms, the conversation concludes with beauty, fashion, image, and semiotics. From root to branch, this project is interdisciplinary.