Book Club

Reading for Planet Earth

What is this Reading for Planet Earth Book Club about?
We read books that have advanced green thinking and doing. ‘Green’ could relate to nature conservation, (human) ecology, sustainable consumption, or to environmental sustainability in the broadest sense. We read classics as well as contemporary bestsellers and aim for an inclusive and diverse list of authors.

Why a book club?
Especially in an academic setting, reading is essential. Yet, it is so difficult to make time to read books. Committing to this book club will solve that. Further, discussing a book in a (small) group of people will enlarge and sharpen understanding and expand worlds. (And it is more fun than thinking about it on your own.)

For whom?
Anyone is welcome; from first year students to facilitating staff and full professors. Also open to non-affiliates of the WUR.

What is the format?
Every month you read a book. Then we discuss it in a physical (not digital) meeting of 75 minutes. The format of these meetings may vary, but generally there will be a short plenary introduction, followed by discussions in small break-out groups, followed by a plenary wrap-up.

What is the language of the book club?
We read books published in, or translated into, English. Related meetings will also be held in English. However, every 4th book will be a book written in Dutch.

Which books, when, where?

A Sand County almanac (1949) Aldo Leopold Mon 5-6-2023, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building (101), Gaia 1
Failing forward: The rise and fall of neoliberal conservation (2023) Robert Fletcher Tue 13-06-2023, 12:00-13:00 [Bonus book/meeting, lead by WUR Scientist4Future] WUR, Forum, B0313
Silent spring (1962) Rachel Carson Mon 3-7-2023, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building, Gaia 1
[IN DUTCH!] Vuur en beschaving (1992) Johan Goudsblom Thu 7-9-2023, 12:30-13:45 WUR Lumen building, Lumen 2
Designs for the pluriverse (2018) Arturo Escobar Fri 29-09-2023, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building, Gaia 1
A bigger picture (2021) Vanessa Nakate Tue 31-10-2023, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building, Gaia 2
The dawn of everything (2021) David Graeber & David Wengrow Thu 7-12-2023, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building, Gaia 1
[IN DUTCH!] Wat de bomen ons vertellen (2020) Valerie Trouet Thu 11-01-2024, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building, Gaia 2
The mushroom at the end of the world (2015) Anna Tsing Tue 6-2-2024, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building (101), Gaia 1
Down to earth (2017) Bruno Latour Wed 6-3-2024, 12:30-13:45 WUR, Gaia building (101), Gaia 1
Matters of care (2017) Puig de la Bellacasa Tue 2-4-2024, 12:30-13:45 WUR Lumen building, Lumen 1
[IN DUTCH!] Wolven op het ruiterpad (2022) Tijs Goldschmidt Thu 2-5-2024, 12:30-13:45 WUR Lumen building, Lumen 1

Previously read and discussed:
Braiding Sweetgrass (2013) Robin Wall Kimmerer - 2023-05-03

I am a WUR student. Can I earn something by participating?

For students, in addition to the intellectual credits, it may be possible to earn ECTS. For 3 ECTS you need to read 3 books from the list, participate in the 3 related meetings, and write a 2000 word synthesis paper according to social scientific academic standards. For 6 ECTS it’s 6 books and a 4000 word paper. For more info email Koen Arts.

How do I join?
Simply read the book abd come to the meeting. To keep up-to-date with the latest news, sign up to the newsletter (at right), and don’t forget to confirm your subscription directly in your inbox!. If you are interested but not sure if you can make it to most or all meetings, feel also free to sign up.

How do I obtain the books?
The onus is on you to obtain the books. Some older titles may be available digitally through The (WUR) library may also have hard or digital copies available. Purchase requests to the library may also offer possibilities, but they would have to be made timely.