The Third Chimpanzee Quotes

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The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal by Jared Diamond
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The Third Chimpanzee Quotes (showing 1-12 of 12)
“Isn't language loss a good thing, because fewer languages mean easier communication among the world's people? Perhaps, but it's a bad thing in other respects. Languages differ in structure and vocabulary, in how they express causation and feelings and personal responsibility, hence in how they shape our thoughts. There's no single purpose "best" language; instead, different languages are better suited for different purposes. For instance, it may not have been an accident that Plato and Aristotle wrote in Greek, while Kant wrote in German. The grammatical particles of those two languages, plus their ease in forming compound words, may have helped make them the preeminent languages of western philosophy. Another example, familiar to all of us who studied Latin, is that highly inflected languages (ones in which word endings suffice to indicate sentence structure) can use variations of word order to convey nuances impossible with English. Our English word order is severely constrained by having to serve as the main clue to sentence structure. If English becomes a world language, that won't be because English was necessarily the best language for diplomacy.”
Jared Diamond, The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal
“The past was still a Golden Age, of ignorance, while the present is an Iron Age of willful bliss.”
Jared Diamond, The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal
“There is nothing new about prophecies to the effect that the end of the world is near if we do not repent. What is new is that such a prophecy is now true, for two obvious reasons. First, nuclear weapons give us the means to wipe ourselves out quickly: no humans possessed this means before. Second, we already appropriate about forty per cent of the Earth’s net productivity (that is, the net energy captured from sunlight). With the world’s human population now doubling every forty-one years, we will soon have reached the biological limit to growth, at which point we will have to start fighting each other in deadly earnest for a slice of the world’s fixed pie of resources. In addition, given the present rate at which we are exterminating species, most of the world’s species will become extinct or endangered within the next century, but we depend on many species for our own life support.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“Animal populations that for one reason or another escaped control by predators and parasites have in some cases also escaped their own internal controls on their numbers, multiplied until they damaged their resource base, and occasionally have eaten their way into extinction.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“Suppose that an archaeologist who had visited us from outer space were trying to explain human history to his fellow spacelings. The visitor might illustrate the results of his digs by a twenty-four-hour clock on which one hour of clock-time represents 100,000 years of real past time. If the history of the human race began at midnight, then we would now be almost at the end of our first day. We lived as hunter-gatherers for nearly the whole of that day, from midnight through dawn, noon, and sunset. Finally, at 11:54 pm we adopted agriculture. In retrospect, the decision was inevitable, and there is now no question of turning back. But as our second midnight approaches, will the present plight of African peasants gradually spread to engulf all of us? Or, will we somehow achieve those seductive blessings that we imagine behind agriculture’s glittering facade, and that have so far eluded us except in mixed form?”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“Some of those solutions include halting population growth, limiting or eliminating nuclear weapons, developing peaceful means for solving international disputes, reducing our impact on the environment, and preserving species and natural habitats.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“After people reached Australia, that continent lost its giant kangaroos, its ‘marsupial lion’, and other giant marsupials.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“This trait has direct animal precursors – namely, the contests between competing individuals and groups that, in many species besides our own, may be resolved by murder.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“Two million years ago, several proto-human lineages had coexisted side by side until a shake-up left only one. It now appears that a similar shake-up occurred within the last 60,000 years, and that all of us alive in the world today are descended from the winner of that upheaval. What was the last missing ingredient whose acquisition helped our ancestor to win?”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“The past was still a Golden Age, of ignorance, while the present is an Iron Age of wilful blindness.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“In short, we evolved, like other animals, to win the reproduction game. That contest has a single aim, to leave as many descendants as possible.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life
“Recent discoveries about apes suggest, however, that a gorilla or common chimp stands at least as good a chance of being murdered as the average human.”
Jared Diamond, The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life

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