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Frans de Waal (1948–2024)

Forfatter af Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?

29+ Works 5,230 Members 113 Reviews 9 Favorited

Om forfatteren

Frans De Waal has been named one of Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People. The author of The Bonobo and the Atheist, among many other works, he is the C. H. Candler Professor in Emory University's Psychology Department and director of the Living Links Center at the Yerkes National Primate vis mere Research Center. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia. vis mindre

Værker af Frans de Waal

Politik blandt chimpanser (1982) 350 eksemplarer
Bonobo: The Forgotten Ape (1997) 226 eksemplarer
Peacemaking among Primates (1988) 125 eksemplarer
Tree of Origin: What Primate Behavior Can Tell Us about Human Social Evolution (2001) — Redaktør; Bidragyder — 83 eksemplarer
Natural Conflict Resolution (2000) — Redaktør — 25 eksemplarer

Associated Works

Darwin (Norton Critical Edition) (1970) — Bidragyder, nogle udgaver658 eksemplarer
The Best American Science Writing 2006 (2006) — Bidragyder — 263 eksemplarer
The Descent of Man: The Concise Edition (2007) — Forord — 48 eksemplarer
Bird Brain: An Exploration of Avian Intelligence (2016) — Forord, nogle udgaver46 eksemplarer
The Joy of Secularism: 11 Essays for How We Live Now (2011) — Bidragyder — 41 eksemplarer
The Oxford Handbook of Language Evolution (2012) — Bidragyder — 20 eksemplarer
Anthropomorphism, Anecdotes and Animals (1996) — Bidragyder — 17 eksemplarer
On Being Moved: From Mirror Neurons to Empathy (2007) — Bidragyder — 9 eksemplarer
Monkeys and Apes in the Wild (2007) — Forord, nogle udgaver5 eksemplarer
Les grands singes : L'humanité au fond des yeux (2005) — Forord, nogle udgaver2 eksemplarer

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Looks at a lot of the research, and some anecdotal evidence, on the nature versus urture or instinct versus culture debate. He was preaching to the choir in my case, so its hard to gauge how compelling his arguments would have been to a skeptic. I am quite sure that man is an animal and shares many of his experiences and ways of reacting to them with his primate cousins and even some more distant relatives
 
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cspiwak | 5 andre anmeldelser | Mar 6, 2024 |
A fun intriguing book taking you into the world of primate research performed in a relatively natural setting. Primates are shown to demonstrate components of behaviour that are highly evocative of our human counterpart. The problem with identification, projecting intent in actions that may or may not subjectively be the same as ours takes an ominous central place in the subtext. However the argument is necessarily circular, you need to empathise and therefore identify yourself with the subject to be able to interpret it as such.… (mere)
 
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yates9 | 9 andre anmeldelser | Feb 28, 2024 |
Highly informative, insightful and enlightening to anyone interested in human nature. A very humbling yet thought provoking account of how much of this intangible matter – morals – we share with primates. You will also learn that a tremendously big part of our individual and collective behavior apparently started in apes. It robs us of our perceived uniqueness, but simultaneously enriches us with a widened realization of a bigger and more complex picture. And this is just a tiny sliver of many other wonderful revelations that are kept for your in store in this treasure trove of a book! A must read.… (mere)
 
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Den85 | 5 andre anmeldelser | Jan 3, 2024 |
This is the primatologist side of the evopsych questions raised in books like [b:Why Is Sex Fun? The Evolution of Human Sexuality|1991|Why Is Sex Fun? The Evolution of Human Sexuality (Science Masters)|Jared Diamond|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1431354333l/1991._SY75_.jpg|1087981], and has a lot more of the hard science answers that book couldn't provide, in regards to our various cousins and their sexual behaviours and gender roles. That's what the first part of this book is about and it's great, building on de Waal's long experience in the field (there's some repetition if you've read his previous books like [b:Mama's Last Hug: Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves|45894068|Mama's Last Hug Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves|Frans de Waal|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1568276393l/45894068._SX50_.jpg|62339663]).
De Waal is a good resource for expanding the often narrow and shallow view of animal psychology and behaviour, but the problem is a lot of these books want to create lessons for or about humans and that's the tenuous part of the equation that unfortunately gets the least supporting evidence.

So it is with this book, where we can catch glimpses of gender divisions and hierarchies handled in different ways by different primates; the very brutal world of chimps contrasted with the casual sex of bonobo society. De Waal is aware of the biased adoption of both of these cases by various political sides trying to promote human agendas, appealing to one or the other cousin as part of the legitimacy of their worldview. Is life a nasty, brutal competition for the top spot or should we all be living in some polyamorous hippie community? As he points out neither caricature is true to the animals, nor are their "conclusions" about life much use to us as humans.

But then De Waal himself attempts to use his primate background to draw conclusions about humans, and that's where the book breaks down. Having a more nuanced view of the complexity of our cousins doesn't really help him come up with solid conclusions about humans. He takes an "old liberal" stance of asserting biology matters, but that the alpha/beta type talk is not applicable to humans and that our social interactions are much more complex and allow for a society that can be free from whatever biology has thrown into the mix (as in more egalitarian than nature might suggest). This might have been an applause line in the 90s but is likely to offend the current polarized politics from both sides.

My main problem is rather that it all becomes "just so" stories where what's plausible sounding takes precedence over asking the question "how the hell can we draw these conclusions". De Waal shies away from examining biological determinism in the way Murray did with The Bell Curve, and is fairly agnostic about how our apelike ancestors divided things according to gender. There's a lot of sore toes he doesn't care to step on. In lieu of such hard biological stances we're reduced to "seems to me" type statements pointing to similarities here and there, and fair enough, the comparisons are interesting. But there aren't answers.

Subtitle should read more like "gender through the eyes of a guy who also happens to be a primatologist".
… (mere)
 
Markeret
A.Godhelm | 3 andre anmeldelser | Oct 20, 2023 |

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Værker
29
Also by
10
Medlemmer
5,230
Popularitet
#4,768
Vurdering
4.0
Anmeldelser
113
ISBN
261
Sprog
19
Udvalgt
9

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