Seeds with Zayaan Khan & Chris Keeve

The Mater Podcast - Episode 3

For episode 3 of The Mater Podcast, we are speaking with Chris Keeve and Zayaan Khan.

Chris is a PhD candidate in Geography at the University of Kentucky, their research has to do with seedkeeping, plant breeding, and agrobiodiversity conservation—the things that people do, or don’t do, with seeds.. and the things that seeds may or may not do on their own—in the face of legacies of racial capitalism in land and food systems. Their dissertation project involves participatory and collaborative work as a seed grower and organiser with multiple seed networks and seed and land justice projects in the U.S. Their work sheds light on the cooperative geographies of seed networks

Zayaan Khan works in food justice, land justice, and seed justice as a storyteller and transdisciplinary artist based in South Africa. Drawing inspiration from the rich biodiversity of local landscapes and the enduring relationship between people, the land, and the sea. She is also building the Seed Biblioteek, a seed library based in Cape Town, South Africa. She is a PhD Candidate in The Environmental Humanities South, University of Cape Town, South Africa, an interdisciplinary research cluster, focused on seed: "From seed-as-object to seed-as-relation."

Speaking from South Africa and Kentucky, they discussed seed-cultures and these intricate personal and global relationships with seeds.. as well as co-evolution - this constant ongoing adapting between human & seed.

It is a really moving conversation, especially in moments when they spoke about the land remembering, and stories of forced removal from the land. Zayaan highlighted the way that 'seeds beautifully nestle into tragic stories'. 

The conversation explored rematriation, and the importance of reconnecting with the land spiritually, and how seeds can offer ways in which to do this.


Find Zayaan Khan and Chris Keeve

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Other projects: Truelove Seeds, The Heirloom Collard Project