Jane Goodall A twentieth-century life

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

Book - 2008

Biography of Jane Goodall who at age twenty-six started a six-month project at the Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve on Lake Tanganyika, Africa which became her life's work.

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BIOGRAPHY/Goodall, Jane
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Up close
New York : Viking/Penguin Group 2008.
Physical Description
218 p. : ill. ; 19 cm
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Main Author
Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen (-)
Review by Booklist Review

This profile of the renowned primatologist highlights her independent spirit and deep love of animals as well as the significant roles Goodall's long-lived mother, Vanne, and the scientist Louis B. Leakey whom she called Fairy Foster Father played in shaping her character and career. Beginning with incidents in Goodall's childhood that presaged her adult interests and research methods, Bardhan-Quallen chronicles the ups and downs of Goodall's personal life, her astounding discoveries about chimpanzee behavior, and her rise to international celebrity status. Detailed personnel rosters and tallies of exact amounts of various grants slow the pace, and the prose sometimes takes on a purplish tinge (It was too early in the relationship, however, for Jane to see clearly beyond the haze of a newfound love), yet readers will be inspired by this account of a woman who launched her career before she acquired the supposedly requisite academic credentials and has done much to change our understanding of ourselves and the natural world. Lightly illustrated with photos and capped by a multimedia resource list. A solid entry in the Up Close series--Peters, John Copyright 2008 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission. Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 6-9-This comprehensive account of Goodall's life and work among the chimpanzees of the Gombe Preserve in Africa will find interest with students who are interested in subjects such as primatology, environmental preservation, animal behavior, and women's studies. Goodall's career path, professional interactions, and research methods are detailed, and her personal life, loves, affairs, and family relationships are described. The validity of her questionable scientific approach and her academic standing are touched upon. Murky photographs of Goodall in Africa illustrate the dry and passionless text.-Eva Elisabeth VonAncken, Trinity-Pawling School, Pawling, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. Review by Horn Book Review

(Middle School) The aptly titled Up Close series delivers yet another solid biography. This time around, readers meet Jane Goodall, the British primatologist who, as a child, dreamed of traveling to "wild, untouched Africa" to study the animals there. With paleontologist Louis Leakey's support, twenty-six-year-old Goodall arrived at Tanzania's Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve in 1960 and began her life's work. Bardhan-Quallen incorporates excerpts from Goodall's writings to good effect, revealing Goodall's passion for her research -- and her growing attachment to Flo, Fifi, David Graybeard, and the other chimps. Bardhan-Quallen doesn't shy away from including criticism of Goodall's work (scientists disagreed with her methodology, including her practice of naming individual chimpanzees rather than numbering them), but she does tend to side with her. Throughout the book, the author also gives readers a glimpse of Jane Goodall the woman. She was extroverted and flirtatious; she adored her supportive mother; she tried (and failed) to balance her professional work with her romantic relationships. Bardhan-Quallen never glamorizes Goodall's life, emphasizing instead her hand-to-mouth existence (she struggled for decades to pull in grant money) and her unflagging efforts today -- "ten months of every year circling the globe, bringing a message of community, conservation, and hope to anyone who will listen." An (unseen) index, a bibliography, source notes, and black-and-white photographs are included.From HORN BOOK, (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. Review by Kirkus Book Review

Jane Goodall, well-known primatologist, was aware of her interest in animals from earliest childhood. As a five-year-old, she spent hours quietly observing a hen in a chicken coop in order to find out where eggs came from in much the same way she would later study primates. After graduating from high school but lacking the money for more education, Goodall creatively found a way to study African primates, first reaching the continent to visit a friend and then finding secretarial work with anthropologist Louis Leakey. He became her mentor, playing a key role in arranging for Goodall's research in Gombe. There her detailed study of the social relations of chimpanzees resulted in vastly enhanced understanding of primate behavior. The entertaining anecdotal narrative focuses more on Goodall's relationships and experiences than her scientific impact: While her gentle enthusiasm is evident throughout, her place in the academic world is less clear. The few grainy black-and-white photographs do little to enhance the presentation. A well-researched but merely serviceable overview of Goodall's life. (source notes, bibliography, index, photo credits) (Biography. 12 & up) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.