Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

It's not the sublime, it's the bacteria


ScienceDaily (2010-05-25) — “Exposure to specific bacteria in the environment, already believed to have antidepressant qualities, could increase learning behavior, according to new research.”

Strolling around outside exposes you to the bacteria. “For most of our history we were hunter gatherers rooting around in the soil ... My advice to people who want to see if they could have this effect [from the bacteria] is to turn your TV off, shut the computer down, go for a walk in the woods, put a garden in ... ” (Dorothy Matthews, who did the research).

More good news for symbiosis fans and for fans of how our (human) being is massively distributed. And, of course, for ecology without nature.


The beastie they're talking about is
Mycobacterium vaccae, first discovered in the 1970s in cow udders, and readily available on the other side of your front door in the soil.

Here's the interview with researcher Dorothy Matthews.

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