The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s-Eye View of the World

by Michael Pollan

The book that helped make Michael Pollan, the New York Times bestselling author of Cooked and The Omnivore’s Dilemma, one of the most trusted food experts in AmericaEvery schoolchild learns about the mutually beneficial dance of honeybees and flowers: The bee collects nectar and pollen to make honey and, in the process, spreads the flowers’ genes far andwide.

  • Paperback
  • Pages: 297 pages
  • Average Rating: 4.05 out of 5
  • Published May 28th 2002 by Random House Trade Paperbacks
  • Original Title: The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World
  • ISBN: 0375760393 (ISBN13: 9780375760396)
  • Edition Language: English
  • Literary Awards: Borders Original Voices Award for Nonfiction (2001)

The book that helped make Michael Pollan, the New York Times bestselling author of Cooked and The Omnivore’s Dilemma, one of the most trusted food experts in AmericaEvery schoolchild learns about the mutually beneficial dance of honeybees and flowers: The bee collects nectar and pollen to make honey and, in the process, spreads the flowers’ genes far and wide. In The Botany of Desire, Michael Pollan ingeniously demonstrates how people and domesticated plants have formed a similarly reciprocal relationship. He masterfully links four fundamental human desires—sweetness, beauty, intoxication, and control—with the plants that satisfy them: the apple, the tulip, marijuana, and the potato. In telling the stories of four familiar species, Pollan illustrates how the plants have evolved to satisfy humankind’s most basic yearnings. And just as we’ve benefited from these plants, we have also done well by them. So who is really domesticating whom?