1st Edition

More-Than-Human Diasporas Topologies of Empire, Settler Colonialism, Slavery

By Joseph Pugliese Copyright 2025
    288 Pages 51 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    288 Pages 51 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Pugliese’s More-Than-Human Diasporas breaks the confines of existing scholarship in its vision of the way that more-than-human diasporic entities—such as water, trees, clay, stone and architectural styles—have functioned as agents within the context of empire, settler colonialism and a largely effaced history of Mediterranean enslavement, a history that pre-existed and then coincided with the Atlantic slave trade. The book traces, for example, the diasporic travels of the eucalyptus from Indigenous Country to Joseph Banks’ botanical collection in London and then onto a grand English-style garden in Southern Italy which was built on the historically effaced labour of enslaved people. 

    By deploying techniques of historical recovery, the book brings to light otherwise buried histories, thereby demonstrating the pivotal role of Mediterranean enslavement in the shaping of Italian society and culture. The book develops a topological understanding of cultural history to account for the complex spatio-temporal effects that connect seemingly disparate times, spaces and more-than-human entities within networks of relationality. In this innovative scholarly work, more-than-human diasporic entities function as conceptual keys to histories which would otherwise remain hidden, thereby revealing desubjugated knowledges which reconfigure anthropocentric histories and further the process of decolonisation.

    The book will be of interest to readers interested in transnational and local histories of empire, settler colonialism and slavery.

    Introduction. 1 Water 2 Clay 3 Gunyah Huts and Stone Temples 4 Sandstone 5 Marble and

    6 Stone Watchtowers 7 “Slave Figs” 8 Orange-Lemon Tree 9 Agave and Prickly Pear Cactus

    10 Eucalyptus


    Joseph Pugliese is Professor of Cultural Studies, Department of Media, Communications, Creative Arts, Language and Literature, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. His monograph, Biopolitics of the More-Than-Human: Forensic Ecologies of Violence (Duke University Press, 2020), was awarded the 2022 Humanities Institute Book Award, presented by the Humanities Institute, Arizona State University, USA.