Living in a Non-human’s World

  • Ola Plonska
  • Younes Saramifar


In this chapter we introduce details about the lives of the non-human entities of the Garden through the gardeners’ narratives and the theoretical approaches of the Actor-Network debate. Through narratives about central Havana’s small-scale urban gardens, we portray what it means to be a gardener through the demands and needs of the plants. Moreover, we argue and stress on the needs of plants to illustrate sociality and social interactions that have remained limited to humans by neglecting the roles of their non-human counterparts. Thus, we are trying to see becoming human through the sociality that non-human counterparts extend towards humans. The stories of entanglement between humans and non-humans are emphasized by also addressing the embodied and sensorial experiences of the ethnographer. Stressing our sensory experiences shows how humans (both a biological and a cultural construct) and nature should not be seen as separate entities but that anthropological perspectives should shift from totalities such as human and nature to natureculture as a collaborative constant becoming. By means of this shift, we unravel and relate how urban gardens and gardeners lead us to the larger issues such as climate change through the social sciences and bottom-up approaches.


Embodiment Entanglement Natureculture Sensory experience Becoming Collaborative existence Corporality Network 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ola Plonska
    • 1
  • Younes Saramifar
    • 1
  1. 1.Vrije Universiteit AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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