Unrooted

Botany, Motherhood, and the Fight to Save an Old Science

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Pub Date Apr 16 2024 | Archive Date Apr 22 2024

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Description

"Evolutionary botanist Zimmerman discusses her passion for plants and inveighs against sexism in the sciences in her marvelous debut memoir...Throughout, Zimmerman’s enthusiasm and expertise make the science accessible even to those without a background in the subject. The results are as edifying as they are galvanizing." - Publishers Weekly STARRED Review

"Erin Zimmerman has exposed a rooted gender failure in science. Her book is important not for this alone. Her work is essential for understanding the future resilience of all flora on this planet." -Diana Beresford-Kroeger, author of To Speak for the Trees

An exploration of science, motherhood, and academia, and a stirring account of a woman at a personal and professional crossroads . . .


Growing up in rural Ontario, Erin Zimmerman became fascinated with plants—an obsession that led to a life in academia as a professional botanist. But as her career choices narrowed in the face of failing institutions and subtle, but ubiquitous, sexism, Zimmerman began to doubt herself.

Unrooted: Botany, Motherhood, and the Fight to Save an Old Science is a scientist’s memoir, a glimpse into the ordinary life of someone in a fascinating field. This is a memoir about plants, about looking at the world with wonder, and about what it means to be a woman in academia—an environment that pushes out mothers and those with any outside responsibilities. Zimmerman delves into her experiences as a new mom, her decision to leave her position in post-graduate research, and how she found a new way to stay in the field she loves.

She also explores botany as a “dying science” worth fighting for. While still an undergrad, Zimmerman’s university started the process of closing the Botany Department, a sign of waning funding for her beloved science. Still, she argues for its continuation, not only because we have at least 100,000 plant species yet to be discovered, but because an understanding of botany is crucial in the fight against climate change and biodiversity loss.

Zimmerman is also a botanical illustrator and will provide 8 original illustrations for the book.
"Evolutionary botanist Zimmerman discusses her passion for plants and inveighs against sexism in the sciences in her marvelous debut memoir...Throughout, Zimmerman’s enthusiasm and expertise make...

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781685890704
PRICE $28.99 (USD)
PAGES 272

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