THE BOTANY OF DESIRE brings Michael Pollan's best-selling book to PBS, showing how human desires are an essential, intricate part of natural history. The program will explore the natural history of four plants – the apple, the tulip, marijuana, and the potato – and the corresponding human desires– sweetness, beauty, intoxication and controlling nature – that link their destinies to our own.
This two-hour documentary begins in Michael Pollan’s garden, and roams the world, from the potato fields of Idaho and Peru to the apple orchards of New England, from a medical marijuana hot house to the tulip markets of Amsterdam. One of the great conceits of human civilization is to put ourselves outside nature – sovereign, constantly shaping and re-shaping the wild for our own purposes; people as subjects, and plants as objects. Taking these plants’ eye view of the world will help viewers understand the need to restore human activity to its proper place in the matrix of nature.
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