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In the Shadow of Man

4.33  ·  Rating Details ·  5,009 Ratings  ·  213 Reviews
Jane Goodall's best-selling classic of primate research is available in a new paperback edition with a postscript from the author and a new introduction by Stephen Jay Gould. "In the Shadow of Man," illustrated with 80 photographs, provides an impressively detailed and absorbing account of the early years of Jane Goodall's field study of, and adventures with, chimpanzees i ...more
Paperback, Revised Edition, 297 pages
Published April 22nd 1988 by Houghton Mifflin Company (first published January 1st 1971)
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Jul 10, 2008 Denise rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My tattered and beloved copy of this book now bears the inscription:
Follow Your Heart
Jane Goodall

I read this book about ten years ago, and to this day it remains one of my favorites. Jane Goodall had gone to secretary school and just happened to have a connection to the Leakey family, whose discoveries have shaped our view of evolution today. A young woman with no prior knowledge about chimpanzees finds herself in the middle of the Gombe, following chimps as they go about their daily busi
Roy Lotz
Shortly before or after (I don't remember) I studied abroad in Kenya with Richard and Meave Leakey, I decided to read the books by 'Leakey's angels': Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Birute Galdikas. These three are known for their pioneering field studies of the three great apes—chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans, respectively. I thought that In the Shadow of Man was a far better read than Gorillas in the Mist. I never did get around to Galdikas's book...

When I read this book, I loved it. I su
Mary La douceur
Jul 21, 2013 Mary La douceur rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Highly recommend this read for both the scientific research and the delightful observations of Jane Goodall. Did you know her efforts lead to so many concepts about animals that we now take for granted? For example, that they have feelings, develop bonds and demonstrate some degree of grief when a family member dies. This has lead to research in dogs, birds and cats with similar insights!
Jul 27, 2013 Nina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Goodall is a great writer. She loves her work, and she makes readers love it too. She has a great, subtle sense of humor and a beautiful style: as passionate as she is about her work, she does not take herself too seriously.
Jun 23, 2009 Jacqui rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: early-man, science
I read Jane Goodall's In the Shadow of Man (Houghton Mifflin 1971) years ago as research for a paleo-historic novel I was writing. I needed background on the great apes so I could show them acting appropriately in their primeval setting tens of thousands of years ago. While I did get a marvelous treatise from this book on their wild environ, I also got my first introduction to the concept that they are almost-human, maybe even human cousins.

But I digress. Back to Jane Goodall.

This is the memoir
Apr 27, 2017 Morgan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I really enjoyed this book. Normally I don't read science books, but kind of made an exception with this one because I admire Jane Goodall and her work with the chimpanzees. Thankfully for me, this book wasn't over my head and didn't use huge scientific words that I wouldn't know because I'm not a scientist. Goodall is a good writer. She picks out her words carefully for non-scientist to understand. She wants everyone to understand animals as much as she does and this book does that perfectly.

Selaine Henriksen
Apr 02, 2012 Selaine Henriksen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Last week my friend Sandy and I went to see a movie about Jane Goodall's life which she was there to present and then had a Q&A session and signed autographs. She's 77! Sandy said that was definitely one of her items on her bucket list. Whenever Sandy and I get together something strange happens. She ended up with a touch of the flu that struck just as we were leaving and then throwing up outside of the car on the street. I'm sure my neighbors, because natch it was back in the 'hood, thought
Mar 17, 2014 Sanhita rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bought the book on a whim and kept it sealed for a month since there were various functions being held at home. Once that got over, I started reading the book and was hooked from the word go, right in the introduction by Jane Goodall.
It was a strange situation! I wanted to read the book in one go, I wanted to savour the book bit by bit like a delicacy. Despite stopping to think over what I read and deliberately keeping the book away, I finished reading it in 6 days. It's very rarely that a book
Teagan D
I loved this. I can't promise that everyone would - I have a feeling it was a case of "this was the perfect book for where I am emotionally/intellectually/spiritually at the moment and it struck home." But even if you were to read it and not feel compelled to give it five stars, I really think you'd like it. Jane's writing made me feel as if we were sitting together over coffee; she's well-written without being pretentious, careful in her observation and description without being dry or over-sci ...more
Claire Couch
Dec 21, 2015 Claire Couch rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Life changing.
Kirsten Cutler
Mar 15, 2017 Kirsten Cutler rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Re-read this book. First read in 1971 when I was studying Anthropology at Berkeley. Incredible story of Jane Goodall's establishment of the Gombe study of chimpanzees, and an introduction to a fascinating cast of chimp characters.
Sep 11, 2016 Suffer_well rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great journey! An enlightening and very distinctive book about the chimpanzees' communities and behaviour. It satisfied my curiosity for the problems in studying such animals and living by them in the wild. Jane Goodhall is one of the most inspiring naturalists of our times.
Oct 08, 2014 Ksy9120 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite biological/non fiction books!
H. P. Reed
Watching the progress of a new science through Goodall's account is fascinating.
Dec 18, 2014 Claudia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science
I have most deep respect and admiration for these people who devote their entire life to a wildlife cause.
May 26, 2016 Cassandra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jane Goodall is everything I aspire to be in life, and this book was just amazing.
Gosh, what an important classic nonfiction text. And why did it take me so long to read it? I had read Primates: The Fearless Science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Biruté Galdikas and loved learning about Goodall, I've seen images and heard about her work, and lately have been on a kick regarding animal science. So, it was natural that I wanted to read this.

I was pleasantly surprised that while she did discuss her life, it wasn't as overbearing as some books can become. I do want to know ab
Dec 08, 2016 Jennifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a wonderful gift (signed copy!) Goodall brings such compassion to get observations about chimpanzees without ever losing the sense that they are wild animals. I learned a lot about chimp behavior from this book--and it even made me think differently about human behavior, especially power relationships.
Amanda Davidson
Jan 27, 2017 Amanda Davidson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love reading about people who have spent time living in the wild, observing animals, and Jane Goodall is inspirational. I cannot wait to continue reading about her chimps!
Feb 28, 2017 Josh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Nature writing at its best. Jane Goodall is an inspiration.
Jul 24, 2011 dragonhelmuk rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 28, 2017 Susan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
I'd always wanted to read Goodall and this, her first book, did not disappoint. I was completely absorbed. As much as I felt I'd learned about chimps over the years, there was still plenty to discover. And the story, though largely a memoir, reads like a novel as Goodall brings out the chimps' different characters and fates. This recent edition contains her thoughts about the environmental threats to the Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve.

At the same time the book is just a great story of a young w
Tanja Berg
Dec 01, 2013 Tanja Berg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, science
Rating 4* out of 5. I've had a fascination with the great apes since National Geographic made a feature of orangutans sometime around 1980. I couldn't read, but I saw the picture of a child about my age sharing a bath with an orangutan baby and crying. I could relate. "Reflections of Eden: My Years with the Orangutans in Borneo" by Birute Galdikas was the first book I read. It was her story in National Geographic too. I read about Dian Fossey's "Gorillas in the mist" (or possibly "Woman in the M ...more
Feb 25, 2017 Alexandra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
O carte buna. Este interesanta descrierea comportamentului maimutei si analogia cu omul ce se poate face.
Tippy Jackson
Nov 06, 2009 Tippy Jackson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: evolution, animalia
Overall enjoyable. She does a good break down of chimp relationships. Some parts were sad. I will say that I think the manner of studying chimps by luring them to your camp with bananas is of course altering the very behaviors you're trying to objectively study. However, I do think she still gains a lot of valuable information and she is constantly asking the right questions. More than the answers, it is her never ending questions that I enjoyed. I also believe she has a good idea of how her set ...more
Kalie Lyn
Nov 10, 2011 Kalie Lyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Almost everyone has heard of Jane Goodall and her work with the chimpanzees. However, the stories of the chimpanzees themselves, and what made Jane fall in love with them in the first place, is something not everyone is familiar with. In the Shadow of Man is a book about those stories, and about the early years, which would become many years, of Jane Goodall’s study, research, and fascination with human’s closest living relatives.

Not only is this book informational and descriptive about the comp
Nose in a book (Kate)
This is a memoir as well as a scientific book, but most of all it is the story of the specific group of chimps that Goodall got to know over many years (this book covers the first decade). You can watch her early progress as a scientist, as the first part of the book describes her gradually learning to do the job through trial and error, while the latter half is effectively her actual study results. These chapters are split fairly scientifically into subjects such as hierarchy, feeding, parentho ...more
Dec 06, 2008 Larry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who thinks we were created special.
This book is #1 on my list of the books that most influenced my life. The orginial publishing date I am guessing was in the 60's or early 70's when the author, the elfin like Jane Goodall, was both young and unknown. She was a disciple of Leakey but possessed of an intellect equal or surpassing his. This single book, written well before all the later DNA work was to me the crystal window into the evolution of human beings. Whatever Christian based uncertainties I had vanished upon my reading of ...more
Jul 20, 2014 Jeffrey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You can pick this book up at any used book store for just a few dollars and it was a very easy, informative read.

Obviously, if you are interested in primates (chimpanzees, though she does speak briefly on some other species such as Baboons who seem to always be in camp) this is a must read. She makes some amazing observations and I find it amazing that chimpanzees can live so long in the tough conditions of the jungle.

The book gets rather depressing in my opinion when you hit the Death chapter
Aug 31, 2012 Tony rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
Only three stars mainly because of the subject, book deservers five but you have to be a hardcore chimpanzee lover and probably have a scientific approach to fully enjoy this. For me, it was a struggle to finish. Jane Goodall certainly has done an amazing work and helped to break some boundaries. For me the obvious comparison is of course Gorillas In The Mist that I read a while back. I can't help it but somehow Dian Fossey's guerilla like, rebellious and outrageous efforts to defend the gorilla ...more
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Around the Year i...: In the shadow of man, by Jane Goodall 1 12 May 25, 2016 04:52AM  
  • Jane Goodall: 40 Years at Gombe
  • Bonobo: The Forgotten Ape
  • Reflections of Eden: My Years with the Orangutans of Borneo
  • Walking with the Great Apes: Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, Birute Galdikas
  • Jane Goodall: The Woman Who Redefined Man
  • Next of Kin: My Conversations with Chimpanzees
  • A Primate's Memoir: A Neuroscientist's Unconventional Life Among the Baboons
  • Kanzi: The Ape at the Brink of the Human Mind
  • Lucy: The Beginnings of Humankind
  • Woman in the Mists: The Story of Dian Fossey and the Mountain Gorillas of Africa
  • Gorillas in the Mist
  • Bonobo Handshake: A Memoir of Love and Adventure in the Congo
  • Where the Wild Things Were: Life, Death, and Ecological Wreckage in a Land of Vanishing Predators
  • The Spotted Sphinx
  • The Emotional Lives of Animals: A Leading Scientist Explores Animal Joy, Sorrow, and Empathy - and Why They Matter
  • When Elephants Weep: The Emotional Lives of Animals
  • Soul of a Lion: One Woman's Quest to Rescue Africa's Wildlife Refugees
  • Dark Banquet: Blood and the Curious Lives of Blood-Feeding Creatures
For the Australian academic and mystery writer, see Professor Jane R. Goodall.

Dame Jane Morris Goodall, DBE (born Valerie Jane Morris-Goodall), is a British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace. Considered to be the world's foremost expert on chimpanzees, Goodall is best known for her 45-year study of social and family interactions of wild chimpanzees in Gombe Strea
More about Jane Goodall...

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“At that moment there was no need of any scientific knowledge to understand his communication of reassurance. The soft pressure of his fingers spoke to me not through my intellect but through a more primitive emotional channel: the barrier of untold centuries which has grown up during the separate evolution of man and chimpanzee was, for those few seconds, broken down.

It was a reward far beyond my greatest hopes.”
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