Public Lecture: Engaging with Plant Agency

Dr Isis Brook explores how we might better engage with plant agency in this Holistic Science Public Lecture.


Thursday 7 October, 4pm


Isis Brook


Online via Zoom. Register via the button below, and you will receive the link to join this talk in your e-ticket.



About this event

The evidence is now well established that natural environments, nearby nature, and just being with plants can improve mental wellbeing.  This is now driving social developments such as school gardening, therapeutic horticulture, increasing green spaces in urban environments, and doctors prescribing time in nature. How does it work? What is happening in human beings when we have plants around? And could that be deepened? Drawing on my experience of working with Colquhoun, Goodwin, and Bortoft (who all drew on Goethe’s scientific work) this talk will focus on one of the shifts in consciousness that they believed was required to explore plant-ness.  This shift relates closely to concepts important to holistic science, such as non-duality, and concepts important to ethics and aesthetics, such as unselfing.  However, unlike concepts as ideas one might read about, the plant realm itself can lead us to these beneficial experiences.

This talk is part of our series of free monthly talks on the subject of Holistic Science, organised by Schumacher College in collaboration with the Field Centre.  You can view the full series, including recordings of previous talks, here.


Isis brook

Isis Brook completed a PhD on Goethean science whilst training with Margaret Colquhoun in the early 1990s.  She has been a university lecturer for over twenty five years mainly teaching environmental philosophy and aesthetics and is author of numerous research papers in these areas.  Her most recent post was with Crossfields Institute, in Stroud UK, where she was involved in designing and teaching on their innovative Masters programme ‘Researching Holistic Approaches to Agroecology’.  Isis is now semi-retired and as a Research Fellow continues to write on phenomenology, plants, landscapes, and Goethe’s approach to nature.  However, a lot of her time is now spent in the garden and on her allotment.

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Thursday 7th October

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