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The Third Chimpanzee for Young People: On the Evolution and Future of the Human Animal

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  18,532 ratings  ·  739 reviews
At some point during the last 100,000 years, humans began exhibiting traits and behavior that distinguished us from other animals, eventually creating language, art, religion, bicycles, spacecraft, and nuclear weapons—all within a heartbeat of evolutionary time. Now, faced with the threat of nuclear weapons and the effects of climate change, it seems our innate tendencies ...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published May 19th 2015 by Triangle Square (first published May 2nd 1991)
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JDKOUO01 I haven't read the book yet but I'm guessing he calls them pygmy chimpanzee and does so (In the case of him calling them such) to relate them to…moreI haven't read the book yet but I'm guessing he calls them pygmy chimpanzee and does so (In the case of him calling them such) to relate them to chimps and therefore relating them to humans/hominids (less)
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4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  18,532 ratings  ·  739 reviews

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Jan 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: our-past
Another great book from Jared Diamond. I found this to be just as engaging as Guns, Germs, and Steel, and also an easier read. I find that his books have so much information that it is helpful for me to outline them as I go. Here are my favorite bullet points from The Third Chimpanzee. Not at all a comprehensive outline, but may be of interest to some people.

Chapter 1
- Our ancestors diverged from other apes around 7 million years ago.
- We share 98.4% of DNA with common chimps.
- Chimps are more c
Apr 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Evrim, antropoloji, psikoloji, tarih, coğrafya, dilbilim, sosyoloji, popüler bilim kitabı okurları
Hayvanlardan Tanrılara - Sapiens: İnsan Türünün Kısa Bir Tarihi kitabının başta idefix gibi sitelerde bilinçli ve kasıtlı bir biçimde sürekli indirime gidip raflardan hiç indirilmemesinin en büyük sebeplerinden birisi bu kitabın açık ve net bir kapitalist sistem propagandası içeriyor olmasıdır. İlgili kitaba yazdığım yorumda detaylarını ve gerekçelerini göreceksiniz.

Bu kitap Sapiens'e kıyasla kesinlikle daha kaliteli, daha tutarlı, daha kapsamlı ve bilimsel. Sadece kaynakçası 45 sayfa tutan bu k
Riku Sayuj

Original review: The audience called for an encore and Jared obliged. The rewind was not as much fun.


The Homosexual Chimpanzee?

However, this book has some great explanations on human sexuality but does not address one which I was not able to find a satisfactory explanation for, evolutionarily speaking: Homosexuality.

The following is an explanatory excerpt from The Extended Phenotype by Richard Dawkins. I am adding this here for my own reference, but I am sure you will find it damn intere
Nov 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fic, history
If you've read Guns, Germs and Steel or Collapse you know what to expect from Jared Diamond- a blizzard of fascinating facts, insights and theories that will spark tens of conversations among your like minded friends and colleagues.

Diamond is a master of spinning hard fact and intriguing theory into readable books, and he does so again in The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution & Future of the Human Animal,
exploring the link between humans and the beings we call apes (Diamond argues against suc
This is a wonderful book by a great author. In fact, I prefer this book to the other books that I've read by Jared Diamond. It is entertaining, informative, and every page is interesting. The book covers a vast range of topics, such as how are humans qualitatively different from other animals, why do men do stupid things to impress women, why do people practice adultery, why do humans practice genocide, how did languages evolve, why do some people become addicted to drugs, why do humans produce ...more
SJ Loria
May 19, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Funny that I read this book in Mexico, a country where more people believe in creation than evolution. For the record, I think we evolved from apes. For the record, that doesn't bother me in the least.

I am going to do two things, first, I will talk about what I learned from this book, secondly I am going to go on a rant about anthropology. While this book was interesting, there were parts where the author stepped far beyond his area of expertise, leading to some very weak chapters. Further, this
Excellent. I'm giving it four stars instead of five only because from the vantage of 2014 its age shows, mainly in the absence of some information learned since it was written about the Neanderthals and the similar but then-unknown Denisovan people - specifically, the presence of small amounts of Neanderthal and Denisovan DNA in the modern human gene pool - and in the absence of that knowledge, the author makes some assumptions about our history with those other peoples that are incomplete at be ...more
Mar 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jared Diamond should be required reading. He has influenced my view of humanity and history more than probably anyone except maybe a history professor in college, where I was a history minor. No, I think I Diamond has influenced me more.

I stumbled across a 3 part series on PBS based on Guns, Germs and Steel a couple of years ago and was floored. I bought and read the book immediately and was even more blown away. Since then I have read Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed and Why i
Jul 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you want to find answers for your questions like the qualitative discrepancies between human and animals, how and why men do stupid things for attracting women, the reasons for being unfaithful among men, evolution of language, the reason for creating artworks by people, please read this book. The author shows that such odd behaviors are not just pertaing to humans, but also has root in ancestral interfaces with animals.
May 20, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I've read Diamond's Collapse and Guns, Germs and Steel and had never heard of this book before, so when I saw it at the bookstore I picked it up because I thought it was his new book. It wasn't. It was his first book, and it shows. This is basically a primer for the rest of his books, since all his other books are expansions of chapters/sections in this one. Why is Sex Fun? is Chapter 3, Guns, Germs and Steel is Part 4 and Collapse is Part 5.

My problem with this book, besides the fact that I'd r
Jared Diamond is a mostly sensible anthropologist. However, he's a lousy evolutionary biologist.

For example, he presents multiple theories of the reason for homo sapiens concealed ovulation. These are presented with false balance i.e. he doesn't share the consensus view, or the quality (and lack thereof) for each theory. Some have laughably low plausibility, in my opinion. He should have done the research and presented the reader with the likely truth, not a list of mostly bad ideas. Worst of al
Dov Zeller
Hmmm. This one is a bit dated and he goes off on some not terribly impressive tangents. But also a lot of interesting stuff.

Here is an outline of the book:

And here is a great critical review
Nov 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sve što nas čini ljudima i na što smo tako ponosni naslijedili smo od predaka. Da li je poljoprivreda bila baš takva sreća kakvom nas uče? Bave li se životinje umjetnošću? koja je veza između djetlića i NLO-a? pročitajte pa ćete saznati.
Sheng Peng
Aug 28, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I will show below why I think Jared doesn't know what he is talking about, why he is an abysmal science writer, and why he is as much of a drama queen as Gladwell.

Firstly, most people would put this book on the "evolutionary biology" shelf. So Jared better know something about evolution and biology. He does. But not nearly enough. For example, I noticed at least five times where he had used group selection, by which a gene propagates because it's beneficial to the group rather than to the indivi
Ericka Clouther
This book was both very interesting and entertaining. It precedes Diamond's book Guns, Germs, and Steel. It ties in pretty well with some other books I've recently read including The Sixth Extinction and Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, and even Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History.

It's a little out-of-date. For example, our ancestor Cro-Magnons and Neanderthals co-existed approximately 100,000 years ago. New research shows that many modern humans contain a little Neanderthal DNA showing that
Bart Everson
Feb 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Homo spaiens
I first became aware of Jared Diamond while having lunch in Tampere in the summer of 2001. I was there in Finland for a conference, and one of my lunch companions was raving about Guns, Germs, and Steel. A quick glance at other reviews indicates that's his most revered book; it seems to be an expansion of a single chapter in The Third Chimpanzee. Indeed many if not all of his subsequent books seem to expand on themes he first addressed here. That says a lot about the scope and ambition of Third ...more
Helga Mohammed el-Salami
Dr. Diamond’s first book for which he won nothing but the admiration of some pathetic, lifeless losers like yours truly. But he should have. It was excellent. True that Chimpanzee is the Salieri to Guns’ Mozart, but what it lacks in breadth it makes up in simplicity and erudition. I breezed through this book with nary a trip to Wikipedia unlike GGS, which sent me there virtually every day. And yet I still learned a ton.

The chapter titled “The Golden Age That Never Was” was a delightful decimati
If I could have a brain transplant, I'd choose to have Jared Diamond's. Loved the whole book! If you have a curious bent, it will blow the doors of your mind wide open. Loved loved loved the disquisition on the Kurgan hypothesis - brilliant to find out where the two disparate languages that I speak came from!
Apr 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, history, nonfiction
Interesting look at where we have come from, and a powerful message of conservation for a society that needs to hear it. Slightly dated, but still a very good read for anyone interested in anthropology and biology
Most chapters are interesting and informative and entertaining, some are outdated by recent finds and a few are complete speculation with misinformed logic and oversimplifications. Maybe it would be wise to revise this book for this century's discoveries.
Nandita Damaraju
A few weeks ago, a bunch of us were talking about the origins of our species, Homo sapiens and I was astonished at how little my friends and I knew about our ancestors. Going back to the roots of our development can provide a lot of insights into our present. So after scouting around for some recommendations, I picked up this brilliant book to learn more about our past, present, and future.

The book begins with the deviation of homo sapiens and our closest relatives, the chimpanzees, and the bon
Mar 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Were you a visitor to Earth from outer space, you'd want a handbook about the dominant kind of life on the planet. The Third Chimpanzee would be perfect for you!

Jared Diamond has published several books, all of them a pleasure to read. In this one he first presents the themes that he develops in the others. You hear about the factors that favored Europeans in their rise to domination of other people which is greatly expanded upon in Guns, Germs and Steel. You also learn of the common human socia
Aug 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the third "textbook" I have read by Jared Diamond. Guns, Germs, and Steel continues as a must read for anyone remotely interested in the history of mankind. The Third Chimpanzee refers to Diamond's views that Homo Sapiens evolved from chimpanzees some 6 million years ago. The other "two" chimpanzees refer to a not well understood "third man" and robust australopithecines. In any event, homo sapiens first emerged as homo erectus 1.7 million years ago and evolved into homo sapiens about 50 ...more
Yasin S.
Jul 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jared Diamond'un okuduğum ikinci kitabıydı. İçeriğini gördükçe ilk olarak bunu okumayı seçmeyi yeğlerdim. Yazarın diğer kitaplarında geniş olarak açıkladığı konular bu kitapta yüzeysel olmayan bir açıklıkla tanıtılmış. Bu basamağı geçtikten sonre yazarın Tüfek,mikrop ve çelik, Seks neden eğlencelidir ve Çöküş gibi kitaplarına geçilebilir.

-Kitap genel olarak insan evrimi ile ilgili de olsa aynı gezegeni paylaştiğımiz ve birlikte evrildiğimiz diğer canlılara da yer veriyor ve konuyu sıkıcı olmay
Nov 24, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science, history
Good book but not quite as good as Guns, Germs, and Steel. This book was written before that one and you can tell that Jared Diamond becomes a more polished and focused writer. The Third Chimpanzee focuses on how many of the characteristics the we consider uniquely "human" (language, art, murder) really aren't as unique as we think. He makes good arguments but maybe takes on more than he should. Still, it sets the stage for Diamond's later works (including Collapse which I still haven't read. ...more
Mar 30, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Third Chimpanzee is meant to show that humans may be able to preserve the environment and avoid mutual destruction through awareness of our true nature, which is something that we don’t spend much time exploring. This book is meant to remedy that. I don’t need to be convinced that humans are a type of chimpanzee, but Jared Diamond has some convincing evidence that I hadn’t known. For one thing, in addition to humans being more closely related to chimpanzees than to any other species, chimpan ...more
Bill Sleeman
Feb 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

…Small bands [of “uncontacted” peoples]…continue to turn up. But at some point within the early twenty-first century, we can expect the last first contact, and the end of the last separate experiment at designing human society…that last first contact won’t mean the end of cultural diversity…but the shift from isolated groups to global population does mean a drastic loss of [some types] of diversity. That loss is to be mourned…

Reading this ARC copy of Jared Diamond’s The Third Chimpanzee (for you
Boian Alexandrov
Nov 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
The book of Jared Diamond (Pulitzer Prize (1998)) made me think deep about Darwin's theory of evolution and human development.

The novel gives a lot of unusual but real examples, such as; animals that breed another animals; animals that make alcohol; etc.. The book explains what is the meaning of the sexual and natural selections (in the evolutionary sense); why the human evolution has reached today's technological level; what are the social interactions between the primates (for example, are th
Jake Gold
I was unimpressed as I had read so many other books on the same, or on similar topics, nevertheless, this book can serve well as good framing for those interested in anthropology in its lens of human evolution.

The one idea I saw discussed here which is often neglected is the idea of human cultural elements existing within animals. That is really freaking cool and I would love to see a book handle that topic in more depth. If you have any recommendations lemme know.

I recommend this for those who
David Campbell
Aug 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: anthropology
The single most important book that fed a mind starving for truth, as I stumbled out of seminary with a thousand more questions and issues than when I went in. Diamond has written a veritable blueprint for the human being... Who we are, and how we came to be this way - drawing on a host of parallels from the animal kingdom: speech, communication, sex, mate selection, etc.

It's not a refutation of anything religious. It's a fascinating book that sheds much light on that most peculiar (yet apparen
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The Point 4 68 Nov 12, 2014 07:38AM  
  • Becoming Human: Evolution and Human Uniqueness
  • The Ape and the Sushi Master: Reflections of a Primatologist
  • At the Water's Edge: Fish with Fingers, Whales with Legs, and How Life Came Ashore but Then Went Back to Sea
  • The Ancestor's Tale: A Pilgrimage to the Dawn of Evolution
  • The Sixth Extinction: Patterns of Life and the Future of Humankind
  • Bully for Brontosaurus: Reflections in Natural History
  • The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation
  • Life: A Natural History of the First Four Billion Years of Life on Earth
  • Remarkable Creatures: Epic Adventures in the Search for the Origin of Species
  • Lucy: the beginnings of humankind
  • What Evolution Is
  • Sociobiology: The New Synthesis
  • The Complete World of Human Evolution
  • The Origins of Life: From the Birth of Life to the Origin of Language
  • The Humans Who Went Extinct: Why Neanderthals Died Out and We Survived
  • The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey
Jared Diamond is the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Guns, Germs, and Steel. He is Professor of Geography at UCLA and has been elected to the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. He has dedicated this book to his sons and future generations.
“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.” 37 likes
“The past was still a Golden Age, of ignorance, while the present is an Iron Age of willful bliss.” 8 likes
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