The Life of Air


Dwelling, Communicating, Manipulating

ISBN: 978-1-60785-254-4

edited by Monika Bakke

Introduction: The Multispecies Use of Air[edit]

‘It’s alive!’ we could certainly exclaim if confronted with a microscopic view of air. As aerobiologists observe, ‘[h]undreds of thousands of individual microbial cells can exist in a cubic metre of air, representing perhaps hundreds of unique taxa’ (Womack et al., 2010: 3645). But what deserves special attention here is not only that air is full of life but also, apart from being a mean of transport and communication, air is a habitat in its own right. The zoe of air comes in abundance and we – breathing organisms – are all in this together for better and for worse, dead or alive. We have finally come to realize that air is messy, being neither an empty space nor a void, but a space where species meet. And like any other life form, as Donna Haraway emphasizes, we find ourselves ‘in a knot of species coshaping one another in layers of reciprocating complexity all the way down’ (2008: 42). (more...)

Dwelling in Air[edit]

Ann M. Womack, Brendan J. M. Bohannan, Jessica L. Green
Biodiversity and Biogeography of the Atmosphere
Anna A. Gorbushina, Renate Kort, Anette Schulte, David Lazarus, Bernhard Schnetger, Hans-Jürgen Brumsack, William J. Broughton, Jocelyne Favet
Life in Darwin's Dust: Intercontinental Transport and Survival of Microbes in the Nineteenth Century
Anders Hedenström
Extreme Endurance Migration: What Is the Limit to Non-Stop Flight?
Elizabeth Thomas
Tomas Saraceno Looks to the Sky and Sees Possibilities
Nerea Cavillo
In the Air
Steven Connor – Taking to the Air

Nonhuman Volatile Communication[edit]

Frederick R. Adler
Plant Signalling: The Opportunities and Dangers of Chemical Communication
Geraldine A. Wright, Florian P. Schiestl
The Evolution of Floral Scent: The Influence of Olfactory Learning by Insect Pollinators on the Honest Signalling of Floral Rewards
Michael R. Whitehead, Rod Peakall
Integrating Floral Scent, Pollination Ecology and Population Genetics
Corinna Thom, David C. Gilley, Judith Hooper, Harald E. Esch
The Scent of the Waggle Dance

Anthropology of Scents[edit]

Gordon M. Shepherd
The Human Sense of Smell: Are We Better Than We Think?
Charles J. Wysocki, George Preti
Facts, Fallacies, Fears, and Frustrations with Human Pheromones
Susana Camara Leret
Smellscapes: The Loss of Smell in a Visual Culture
Usman Haque
Scents of Space
Oswaldo Maciá, Jenny Marketou, Chrysanne Stathacos, Clara Ursitti
Odor Limits


Bogusław Buszewski, Martyna Kęsy, Tomasz Ligor, Anton Amann
Human Exhaled Air Analytics: Biomarkers of Diseases
Sabrina Raaf
Breath I: Pleasure
Breath Cultures
Jarosław Kozakiewicz
Oxygen Towers
Tomas Saraceno
Poetic Cosmos of the Breath
Ruud Kaulingfreks , René Ten Bos
Learning to Fly: Inspiration and Togetherness
M. J. Parkes
Breath-holding and Its Breakpoint

Airborne Anxieties[edit]

Simon Luechinger
Valuing Air Quality Using the Life Satisfaction Approach Valuing Air Quality Using the Life Satisfaction Approach
G. Liccardi, A. Custovic, M. Cazzola, M. Russo, M. D'Amato, G. D'Amato
Avoidance of Allergens and Air Pollutants in Respiratory Allergy
Lisa Fong Poh Ng ; The Virus That Changed My World
How Flu Viruses Attack
What You Should Know About Biological Warfare
How to Survive- Biological or Chemical Attack
Critical Art Ensemble
Bodies of Fear in a World of Threat
Beatriz da Costa


A 'Frozen' PDF Version of this Living Book[edit]

Download a 'frozen' PDF version of this book as it appeared on 7th October 2011