Chimpanzees in Context: A Comparative Perspective on Chimpanzee Behavior, Cognition, Conservation, and Welfare (Paperback)

Chimpanzees in Context: A Comparative Perspective on Chimpanzee Behavior, Cognition, Conservation, and Welfare By Lydia M. Hopper (Editor), Stephen R. Ross (Editor), Jane Goodall (Foreword by) Cover Image

Chimpanzees in Context: A Comparative Perspective on Chimpanzee Behavior, Cognition, Conservation, and Welfare (Paperback)

By Lydia M. Hopper (Editor), Stephen R. Ross (Editor), Jane Goodall (Foreword by)


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The study of the chimpanzee, one of the human species’ closest relatives, has led scientists to exciting discoveries about evolution, behavior, and cognition over the past half century. In this book, rising and veteran scholars take a fascinating comparative approach to the culture, behavior, and cognition of both wild and captive chimpanzees. By seeking new perspectives in how the chimpanzee compares to other species, the scientists featured offer a richer understanding of the ways in which chimpanzees’ unique experiences shape their behavior. They also demonstrate how different methodologies provide different insights, how various cultural experiences influence our perspectives of chimpanzees, and how different ecologies in which chimpanzees live affect how they express themselves.
After a foreword by Jane Goodall, the book features sections that examine chimpanzee life histories and developmental milestones, behavior, methods of study, animal communication, cooperation, communication, and tool use. The book ends with chapters that consider how we can apply contemporary knowledge of chimpanzees to enhance their care and conservation. Collectively, these chapters remind us of the importance of considering the social, ecological, and cognitive context of chimpanzee behavior, and how these contexts shape our comprehension of chimpanzees. Only by leveraging these powerful perspectives do we stand a chance at improving how we understand, care for, and protect this species.
Lydia M. Hopper is a primatologist who studies how monkeys and apes innovate and learn new skills. She is the assistant director of the Lester E. Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes at Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago, IL.

Stephen R. Ross supervises behavior and cognitive research at the Fisher Center and chairs the Chimpanzee Species Survival Plan of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Product Details ISBN: 9780226727981
ISBN-10: 022672798X
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication Date: January 1st, 2021
Pages: 752
“Our increased understanding of primate behavior has helped us to better understand ourselves. We are not (as was commonly believed in the early 1960s) the only species able to use and make tools, have personalities, minds, and emotions. There is, after all, no difference in kind between us and other animals. Knowing that our closest living relatives are the great apes and studying ways in which our behavior is so similar to theirs, also helps us appreciate the main differencethe explosive development of the human intellect. How strange that the most intellectual species is destroying our only home, Planet Earth. . . . It takes considerable time to study the many facets of a chimpanzee’s life. But we don’t have much time left if we are to do something to help the survival of our closest living relatives. Now it is time to use our intellect to start healing the harm we have inflicted, to protect the habitats of our primate relatives (along with biodiversity) before it is quite too late.”
— Jane Goodall, from the foreword

“Anyone who wishes to be up to date on chimpanzees and bonobos needs to read this volume. A wealth of knowledge has been gathered by a new generation of enthusiastic researchers both in captivity and in the field. Topics range from social behavior and cognition to conservation and optimal care. It is rare to find so much hard-won information together in one place.”
— Frans de Waal, author of "Mama’s Last Hug: Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves"

“Mind-bending discoveries with far-reaching implications are abundant inside this volume. A whole community of the best and brightest scientists reveal startling new secrets about the lives of our closest animal relatives. Following in the pioneering footsteps of Jane Goodall, what they share will surprise and delight every animal lover and academic alike. If you ever wondered how much chimpanzees are like us compared to other animals, this is the book for you.”
— Brian Hare, coauthor of "Survival of the Friendliest: Understanding Our Origins and Rediscovering Our Common Humanity"

"Chimpanzees in Context is a comprehensive summary of what we know about these remarkable animals and provides information that is essential in developing conservation protocols. . . . [A] forward-looking collection."
— Marc Bekoff