Showing posts with label Maris Wicks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Maris Wicks. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Primates : the fearless science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas by Jim Ottaviani, Maris Wicks

Rating: WORTHY!

Louise Leakey, the renowned, if controversial Kenyan paleoanthropologist, got three things unquestionably right - he talked Jane Goodall into studying chimpanzees, recruited Dian Fossey to study gorillas, and Biruté Galdikas to study orangutans. Each of these three were each self-starting groundbreakers in their respective fields: hard-workers who contributed immensely to our understanding of these three major primates, which in turn helped us to understand both ourselves and the primitive hominids that Leakey himself was studying.

I've read and enjoyed books written by each of these three "Trimates" as Leakey referred to them, and so it might seem strange to then go on and read a necessarily limited graphic novel about them, but I admire them immensely and I found this book amusing, educational, and well-worth reading as an introduction. It's suitable for young and old alike, and so serves its purpose well. It's divided into three sections, one for each of them, beginning with Goodall, then moving on to Fossey and Galdikas in turn, including sections in between where all three meet, albeit on very rare occasions. You can find photos online of these encounters along with much material about their research.

Only Galdikas, the youngest of the three, still remains in the field so to speak, having married a "local" and taken up residence down there, and she continues her research. Fossey was murdered brutally on St Stephen's day in 1985, and Goodall is in her mid-eighties, but still an energetic advocate for chimpanzees. I enjoyed this book and commend it as a worthy read.