My interest in soliphilia is derived from an curiousity for and a want for restorative relationships and futures from an ecological perspective. From my essay: “Vaster and More Slow” written for
What emerges out of a radical plant-human
interdependence, one that is not anthropocentric? In Radical Botany: Plants and
Speculative Fiction (2019), Natania Meeker and Antónia Szabari argue that
plants aren’t “limpid objects of knowledge as eighteenth-century botany seems to
claim but instead help generate experimental epistemologies and narratives.”
Plants carry invisible, disregarded or elusive worlds that trouble human
ethical and political models.
[…] In Radical Botany, Meeker and Szabari ask, “Can
plants help us imagine life differently with their inclusion in human economies
of pleasure, agency, and speculative creations?” They posit that plants
destabilize our human capacities for worldmaking, perceiving and existing,
paving the way for new planthropocentric worlds to be conceived. Anthropologist
Natasha Myers describes these plant-centric entanglements: “It is not an
overstatement to say that we are only because they are. The thickness of this
relation teaches us the full meaning of the word interimplication… It is time
for a radical solidarity project that insists that we are of the plants.”
Similarly, fungi trouble traditional designations of “inanimate”
and “animate”, “animal” and “plant”. And so, what does it mean to become fungal
in resistance to capitalist, extractive structures?
Intimate and queered plant-fungi-human mutuality offers
visions of non-hierarchical relations: desire outside colonial and capitalist
Mycorrhizal systems offer up a valuable study into plant-fungi mutuality. Running underground, these systems offer up subversive opportunities to investigate soliphilia and interdependence in defiance of extractive, capitalist systems. Straddling the line between 'concious' and 'unconcious and plant versus animal fungi can symbolize a non binary, queered existence.