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Philosophy, Literature, Culture
Critical Plant Studies is a field that has grown in popularity over recent years. Brill is proud to have launched Critical Plant Studies, the original series with this title, with leading expert Michael Marder in 2013.

The goal of the Critical Plant Studies is to initiate an interdisciplinary dialogue, whereby philosophy and literature would learn from each other to think about, imagine, and describe, vegetal life with critical awareness, conceptual rigor, and ethical sensitivity. Literary works featuring plant imagery may be analyzed with reference to philosophical frameworks, while philosophical discussions of the meanings of vegetal life may be enriched and supported with the tools of literary criticism. Another dialogic dimension of the series entails a sustained engagement between Western and non-Western philosophies and religious traditions, representative of the human attitudes to plants. This “cross-pollination” of different fields of knowledge and experience will become possible thanks to the fundamental role plants play in human life, regardless of their backgrounding or neglect.

Ethically stated, the aim of the book series is to encourage an incremental shift of cultural attitudes from a purely instrumental to a respectful approach to vegetal beings. This is particularly important at the current time of the global environmental crisis, when massive de-forestation, seed patenting, and profit-driven agriculture threaten the very future of life on the planet. Not only will works included in the series shed light on the being of plants, but they will also assist us in critically thinking through the crucial issues and challenges of the contemporary world. Bioethics and genetic engineering, of which plants were the first examples; the role of spirituality and holism in the techno-scientific age; the reliance of our imagination and creativity on elements of the “natural” world; global food shortages and sustainable agricultural practices; the roots of our thinking and writing in other-than-human, vegetal processes, such as growth and decay, germination and branching out, fecundation and fruition—books included in Critical Plant Studies will, in one way or another, touch upon these and related themes central to the philosophy, literature, and culture of the twenty-first century.

Thus, we are looking to publish a mix of specialized manuscripts and introductory texts on the theory, literary criticism, and religious or aesthetic appreciation of plant life. Each title in the series will combine at least two of the disciplines listed above, with preference given to cutting-edge methodologies in comparative literature, comparative philosophy, comparative religious studies, etc., and trans-disciplinary approaches. Analyses of plant-related writings and artworks from any historical period and geographical area will be welcome.
Ethical Theory and Practice (ETP) is dedicated to those works, which attempt to develop contemporary ethical thought through crossing the gap between ethical theory and practice. Thus it welcomes all critical and/or interdisciplinary works uniting the empirical, conceptual and normative endeavours of ethics.

Ethical Theory and Practice is a special series in the Value Inquiry Book Series.
Studies in Applied Ethics draws on the ethical resources of Western as well as Eastern traditions of thought to publish books that bring moral theory and vision to bear on the pressing issues of contemporary life.
Studies in Applied Ethics is a special series in the Value Inquiry Book Series.
Series Editor:
Studies in Moral Philosophy is a book series affiliated with the Journal of Moral Philosophy. This series publishes books in all areas of normative philosophy, including applied ethics and metaethics, as well as moral, legal, and political theory. Book proposals exploring non-Western traditions are also welcome. The series seeks to promote lively discussions and debates among the wider philosophical community by publishing work that avoids unnecessary jargon without sacrificing academic rigour.
Prospective authors interested in contributing to this series should contact the Series Editor in the first instance: Thom Brooks at

The series published an average of 1,5 volumes per year over the last 5 years.
Identität – Einheit – Würde
Diese Studie entwickelt einen umfassenden Begriff personaler Identität, der gleichermaßen theoretische wie praktische Fragestellungen betrifft. Personen werden dabei als Lebensformen verstanden, die komplexe Selbst- und Fremdverhältnisse eingehen. Im kritischen Durchgang durch klassische und neuere Theorien der Person entwickelt die Arbeit einen neuartigen Ansatz, der es erlaubt, Personen als Lebewesen zu denken, denen eine unantastbare Würde zukommt. Indem die Studie auf die personale Form unseres Lebens reflektiert, grenzt sie sich einerseits von Auffassungen ab, die unsere Identität allein in unserer biologischen Natur erblicken, und andererseits von solchen, die unsere Identität auf rein kognitive Prozesse zurückführen.
Die Reihe ist abgeschlossen.
Philosophy as a Way of Life (PWL) is both a meta-philosophy and a methodological approach to the study of philosophy, inspired by the work of the French scholar Pierre Hadot (1922-2010). As a methodology, PWL emphasizes that all ancient philosophical works reflect pedagogical and psychagogic concerns, and argues that these features should continue to be taken into account in contemporary philosophy. It is based largely on the practice of “spiritual exercises”, intended to transform the practitioner’s way of perceiving the world, and hence her mode of being, in order to enable her to lead a freer, more happy existence. Thus, PWL views philosophy in its fullest sense as profoundly transformational.

Philosophy as a Way of Life: Texts and Studies will make available English translations of key studies on PWL and publish scholarly monographs and edited collections that consider its different aspects and implications.

Books in this series will explore PWL in antiquity, the renaissance, the early modern period, and up to the present, PWL as a methodological approach to the history of philosophy, the implications of PWL for understanding education and its history, the cross-cultural possibilities it opens up, the relationships between PWL, virtue ethics and philosophy of culture, and the different literary genres of PWL, including the way these genres impact the style and content of ancient, medieval and early modern philosophical works.
Zur ethischen Selbstbestimmung des Einzelnen
Der Einzelne ist nicht nur gegenüber anderen, sondern auch gegenüber sich selbst verpflichtet; denn es gibt ethische Gründe, die ihm aufgeben, Rücksicht auf sich selbst zu nehmen. Dazu gehört die Pflicht, sich selbst ernst zu nehmen. Zu diesem Zweck müssen Entscheidungen nicht allein die eigenen Interessen berücksichtigen, vielmehr soll in ihnen auch die eigene Person eine Rolle spielen. Mit Selbsterniedrigungen verfehlt man sich daher selbst. Führt man in dieser Weise Pflichten gegen sich selbst auf ethische Gründe zurück, so lassen sich die gegen sie gerichteten Einwände der Widersprüchlichkeit und Überforderung zurückweisen. Es wird deutlich, dass die Ethik unvollständig bliebe, wenn man das Selbstverhältnis der Einzelnen außer Acht ließe. Auswirkungen hat das auch für politische Institutionen. Diese können ebenfalls gegenüber sich selbst verpflichtet sein und sollen Bedingungen schaffen, unter denen die Einzelnen in verantwortbarer Weise mit sich umgehen können.
This first in-depth study of Valerius Flaccus’ animals reveals their role in his poetic programme and the manifold ways in which he establishes their subjectivity. In one encounter, a trapped bird becomes a tragic victim, while the trapper is dehumanized. Elsewhere there are touching portrayals of animal/human camaraderie and friendship. Furthermore, Valerius’ provocative consideration of the ‘monstrous’ challenges simplistic definitions of any being’s nature, or the nature of relationships across species. His challenge entails profound ethical implications for his Roman readership, which resonate with us as we assess our own relationship to animals and the natural world today.
Volume Editor:
This book is the outcome of one of the most extensive international academic projects on the COVID-19 pandemic in the field of humanities and social sciences. It includes the reflections of scholars from 25 universities, in Europe, Asia, Canada, Australia, the US, and the UK, on 60 important philosophical and political questions. This paradigmatic volume is unique in the history of the humanities and social sciences in dealing with pandemics and should be considered as a starting point for more coherent and synergistic academic cooperation in preparation for similar future phenomena.