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Geranium By Kasia Boddy

Geranium by Kasia Boddy

Condition - Very Good
$26.49
Only 3 left

Summary

Today geraniums can be found throughout the world, their widespread use in food and perfume manufacture as well as floral display exemplifying the global industrialization of plant production. This book details how the amenable geranium remains a plant that many love and others love to hate, but above all it is a flower that is seldom ignored.

Geranium Summary

Geranium by Kasia Boddy

Reaktion's new 'Botanical' series is the first of its kind, integrating horticultural and botanical writing with a broader account of the cultural and social impact of plants. In that sense, the South African geranium (the enduring, if confusing, common name for the genus Pelargonium) is perhaps the perfect plant to inaugurate the series. The story of the geranium's inexorable rise encompasses many other historical narratives: from plant hunting to commercial cultivation; from the role of plants in alternative medicine and the philanthropic imagination to changing styles in horticultural fashion. Geraniums were first collected by seventeenth-century Dutch plant hunters on the sandy flats near present-day Cape Town, and before long wealthy collectors and enterprising nurserymen were competing for this latest rarity to grace their hothouses. But the geranium was not destined to be a fashionable exotic for long: scarlet hybrids were soon to be found on every cottage windowsill and in every park bedding display, and the horticultural backlash began. Today geraniums can be found throughout the world, their widespread use in food and perfume manufacture as well as floral display exemplifying the global industrialization of plant production. In Geranium, Kasia Boddy details how the cheerful and amenable geranium remains a plant that many love and others love to hate, but above all it is a flower that is seldom ignored. Featuring numerous fine illustrations, Geranium explores the ever-changing image of the plant as portrayed in painting, literature, film and popular culture worldwide.

Geranium Reviews

"[Boddy] skillfully weaves together references about geraniums from Darwin, Dickens, and other authors to show how their roles changed from rare exotics to common, well-known garden and house plants, and discusses the new technologies . . . that made the development of new cultivators possible. The book is richly illustrated throughout with over 100 spectacular images of geraniums in works of art, herbarium specimens, and photographs."
-- "Choice"
"Boddy skillfully traces the humble houseplant's rise from its native southern Africa to every windowsill in South London, and beyond. . . . In subtle ways, their their presence continues to inform our notions of gender, class, and race. (In Chicago's summer of 1964, a geranium in a white person's windowsill signified that they opposed racism.) This is what's extraordinary about Boddy's short book: she convincingly argues for pelagonium's influence on the shape of Western culture."
-- "Los Angeles Review of Books"
"Handsomely designed and beautifully written volumes on subjects you might not think you're interested in. . . . The best thing about [Geranium] and Oak . . . is the focus on cultural history."-- "Boston Globe"
"If you are interested in sociology, art, history and literature, this book will be a joy for you to read. . . . The book is well written, entertaining and enlightening. . . . A fine and distinctive addition to the literature and history of the geranium. . . . Geranium should be enjoyed by all garden and geranium enthusiasts--pelargonistes--as well as social historians and botanists who want to understand these plants and their historical context and contributions. This book is highly recommended."-- "Central Coast Geranium Society"
"Monographs can be dull and technical affairs, but the new Botanical series from Reaktion is something else. This book by a Cambridge don is a clever, lively and literary account of the social history of geraniums--more properly Pelargonium. It is a fascinating study that takes the reader from the flower's African origins to our modern bedding plant, the 'cherishable common' without which no summer is complete. . . . There is something for everyone here and the illustrations are as scholarly and entertaining as the text. Readers who are looking for a 'how to grow it' manual may be disappointed, but those in search of a beautifully produced book with plenty of learning worn lightly should be delighted by Geranium."-- "The Garden (Magazine of the Royal Horticultural Society)"

About Kasia Boddy

Kasia Boddy is lecturer in the Faculty of English at the University of Cambridge and has published widely on British and American literature and film. She is the author of Boxing: A Cultural History (Reaktion, 2008) and The American Short Story Since 1950 (2010), and is editor of The New Penguin Book of American Short Stories (2011).

Additional information

GOR005984522
9781780230481
1780230486
Geranium by Kasia Boddy
Used - Very Good
Hardback
Reaktion Books
2012-10-01
224
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us

Customer Reviews - Geranium