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Ludovic Coupaye (University College London)
Classical analyses of gardens often privilege a perspective based on these spaces as being related or compared to other spaces, such as villages, forests, cultivated or uncultivated areas in a 'horizontal' way. However, what happens when we also investigate them in terms of 'vertical' relations? This paper is an exploration of Abulës-Speakers ('Abelam') yams gardens through the behaviours of plants and the ways gardeners engage with them. Within an Abulës cosmology, as delineated in architecture, visual representational systems, kinship system, and some recurring terms in everyday discourses, gardens appear as a crucial interface, between 'insides' and 'outsides', 'aboves' and 'below', for the reproduction of social life of both humans and non-humans.
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