Living Books About Life

Living Books About Life is a series of curated, open access books about life – with life understood both philosophically and biologically – which provide a bridge between the humanities and the sciences. Produced by a globally-distributed network of writers and editors, including Mark Amerika (University of Colorado at Boulder), Anna Munster (University of New South Wales), Steven Shaviro (Wayne State University), Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr (SymbioticA, University of Western Australia), Monika Bakke (University of Poznan), Timothy Lenoir (Duke University), Alberto López Cuenca (Universidad de las Américas, Puebla) and Jussi Parikka (Winchester School of Art), the books in the series repackage existing open access science research by clustering it around selected topics whose unifying theme is life: e.g., air, agriculture, bioethics, cosmetic surgery, electronic waste, energy, neurology and pharmacology.

By creating twenty one ‘living books about life’ in just seven months, the series represents a new model for publishing, in a sustainable, low-cost manner, many more such books in the future. These books can be freely shared with other academic and non-academic institutions, organisations and individuals. Taken together, they constitute an interdisciplinary resource for researching and teaching relevant science issues across the humanities, a resource that is capable of enhancing the intellectual and pedagogic experience of working with open access materials.

All the books in the series are themselves ‘living’, in the sense they are open to ongoing collaborative processes of writing, editing, updating, remixing and commenting by readers. As well as repackaging open access science research – along with interactive maps, visualisations, podcasts and audio-visual material – into a series of books, Living Books About Life is thus engaged in rethinking ‘the book’ itself as a living, collaborative endeavour in the age of open science, open education, open data and e-book readers such as Kindle and the iPad. The Living Books About Life series thus acts as a companion project to the Culture Machine Liquid Books series, also published by Open Humanities Press.

Living Books About Life was funded by the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), and is a collaboration between Open Humanities Press and three academic institutions: Coventry University, Goldsmiths, University of London, and the University of Kent.

To find out how to contribute, please visit the Living Books About Life site (