Allee, someone who served as an inspiration. Beyond that, Robert Ardrey was mentored in the craft of writing by Thornton Wilder while at the Univ. For example, the author compares the "genetic lottery" each of us is beset with to a hand of poker. We are children of Cain.
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Allee, someone who served as an inspiration. Beyond that, Robert Ardrey was mentored in the craft of writing by Thornton Wilder while at the Univ.
For example, the author compares the "genetic lottery" each of us is beset with to a hand of poker. We are children of Cain. And were it not so, then for humanity there would be no hope. We are born of risen apes, not fallen angels, and the apes were armed killers besides. And so what should we wonder at? Or our treaties whatever they may be worth; our symphonies however seldom they may be played; our peaceful acres, however frequently they may be converted into battlefields; our dreams however rarely they may be accomplished.
The miracle of man is not how far he has sunk but how magnificently he has risen. We are known among the stars by our poems, not by our corpses. For the soundest of evolutionary reasons, man appears at his best when times are worst. But more than that, the book served as a pathway to so many other important books by authors such as Raymond Dart with whom Ardrey spent considerable time in S.
In a curious sort of way, the book has been with me ever since but only recently did I establish time to reread African Genesis. Yes, much has happened in the world of research on the early archeological roots of mankind as well as competing explanations regarding the behavior of early primates. At some point, unable to locate my paperback edition from my time in Africa, I wrote away for a used hardcover edition, which when it arrived bore the inscription of William L.
My apology for taking so very long to deal with a review of African Genesis Jonathan. Alas, some of the comments of reviewers at this site betray an almost utter absence of familiarity with the book but I was quite moved by the positive review by Edward Simpon. Zoology has carried on apace, and added to his findings, but this is a book still far ahead of mainstream educational provision.
It is a profound book, and its message stands.
Background[ edit ] Robert Ardrey, at the time a working playwright and screenwriter, travelled in to Africa , partly at the behest of Richard Foster Flint , to investigate claims made by Raymond Dart about a specimen of Australopithecus africanus. Dart, in his laboratory at Witwatersrand University Medical School , had assembled evidence for a controversial thesis. Among the collection were fossil baboon skulls from the caves of Taung , Terkfontein and Makapan that he believed showed fractures caused by Australopithecus wielding bone clubs; the jaw of a juvenile ape-man from Makapansgat which had been fractured and lost its incisors; and 7, fossil bones from the Makapansgat cave. Those instincts are with us today. As a correspondent he wrote an article about it for The Reporter. After receiving significant attention the article was reprinted in Science Digest , which marked the beginning of the spread of popular notions about Australopithecus.