The Rise And Fall Of The Third Chimpanzee: Evolution and Human Life

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More Like This. Other Editions and Formats. Choose a Format. On Shelf. CMC Leadville Campus. D53 1 of 1 Basalt Non Fiction Date Edition Publisher Phys Desc. Availability HarperPerennial, viii, pages : illustrations, portraits. More Info Place Hold. See Full Copy Details. More Copies In Prospector.

Third Chimpanzee by Jared Diamond - AbeBooks

Loading Prospector Copies Table of Contents. Loading Table Of Contents Loading Excerpt LC Subjects. Human evolution. Nature -- Effect of human beings on. Social evolution. More Details. Similar Series From NoveList.

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Meanwhile, humans living among farm animals developed immunity to the diseases they carried. By the time they encountered other societies, their military power, metal tools and, above all, their deadly germs gave them the decisive advantage.

It won a Pulitzer prize and has sold more than 1. Mitt Romney quoted it admiringly in his presidential campaign, garbling its message entirely. After all, they are explicitly a retort to racism; he denies Eurasian societies any grounds for pride at ending up on top, exposing the geographic privilege on which their success relied.

The Third Chimpanzee The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal P S

He examines how some cultures destroyed themselves by ignoring geography — the saddest example being Easter Island, whose occupants deforested their home, launching themselves on a downward spiral of war, cannibalism and eventual eradication. The bigger message, clearly, is that we are all acting like Easter Islanders today, sabotaging ourselves by ruining the climate.

That certainly acknowledged human agency — but after allegedly excusing the oppressors, Diamond now seemed to be blaming the oppressed for their fate. This general charge — that Diamond offers a hugely oversimplified, morally exculpatory account of history — is the only thing that punctures his politesse.

Because the fact is that geography has a strong influence on humans. Geography sometimes plays a huge role; sometimes none at all. I would encourage anyone who disagrees to try standing around in Greenland in January without clothes. They are correct that he leans heavily on anecdote to make his case — but then it is hard to see how such an all-encompassing account could do otherwise.

The Third Chimpanzee

He attributes his taste for discipline-hopping to his childhood, especially his years at Roxbury Latin school , a private academy dating back to the 17th century, where he was encouraged to study Latin and Greek. The future of the world became more real and more important. At first glance, this argument treats indigenous cultures with respect: Diamond argues that we should let them teach us how to raise children collectively, eat more healthily and value older members of society.

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But the book triggered the harshest criticisms yet. Simultaneously, the tribal rights group Survival International accused Diamond of aiding the elimination of these cultures by portraying them as incorrigibly violent and, implicitly, in need of state subjugation. It should instead be condemned [because it] is wrong. Once, on a field trip, he proposed setting up camp under a beautiful old tree, but his New Guinean colleagues refused.

It was dead, they explained, and might kill them in the night.


The chances were tiny — but if you sleep under trees many nights a year, they add up. The biggest dangers in his LA life today, Diamond believes, are slipping in the shower, tripping on uneven paving stones and car accidents. Even if the chance of serious injury or death in the bathroom is one in 1,, that is far too big for something you do every day. At 77, Diamond is due back in New Guinea imminently on fieldwork; he has no plans to retire from teaching, and is at work on a new book, about how societies respond to national crises.

It is due to be published when he is 81 or He appears to have no intention of letting falling trees or slippery showers — or, for that matter, angry anthropologists — stand in the way. Facebook Twitter Pinterest. Topics Jared Diamond A life in