Cover: Planet Without Apes, from Harvard University PressCover: Planet Without Apes in PAPERBACK

Planet Without Apes

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Product Details


$30.00 • £24.95 • €27.00

ISBN 9780674416840

Publication Date: 11/24/2014


272 pages

5 x 7-1/2 inches

Belknap Press


Stanford examines the threats to apes’ survival and explores approaches to reversing or at least neutralizing those pressures. He reveals a complex web of cultural, social, economic and biological issues that explain why this problem is so exceedingly difficult to solve.—Sarah Halzack, The Washington Post

Will electronic gadgetry bring down the great apes? The link may seem surreal, but in this study of the plight of gorillas, chimpanzees, orangutans and bonobos, primatologist Craig Stanford reveals how mining coltan, a mineral used in electronics, destroys primate habitats and fuels the illegal bush meat trade. In his wide-ranging call for action, Stanford—co-director of the Jane Goodall Research Center in Los Angeles, California—lays out the critical threats, arguing that humanity’s closest cousins are viewed as savage ‘others’ and subjected to a genocidal urge last seen in the colonial era.Nature

Whether this book leaves you feeling deflated or empowered, it will make you consider our ethical responsibility to conserve our closest living relatives.—Kimberley J. Hockings, Times Higher Education

A searingly urgent little book.—Steve Donoghue, Open Letters Monthly

Humans’ closest relatives, the great apes, have been almost exterminated, and we have no one to blame but ourselves. In his straightforwardly written call to save our next-of-kin, noted primatologist Stanford examines the myriad challenges nonhuman primates face today.—Nancy Bent, Booklist

With passion and clarity, Stanford describes the nature and extent of the threats from habitat loss, hunting for meat, diseases (including those transmitted from humans), and ecotourism… It takes an experienced primatologist like Stanford to convey the true scope of the threats [apes] face and the importance of their continued existence.—J. Nabe, Choice

Stanford persuasively argues that the continued survival of the great apes, humanity’s closest living relatives, is approaching a tipping point… Stanford begins by demonstrating why gorillas, orangutans, chimpanzees, and bonobos merit priority, given their similarities to humans in such areas intelligence, culture, and tool-making. A pragmatist, the author observes that limited resources are probably best employed in securing tropical forests where generations of apes can live on, rather than creating sanctuaries for orphans… This is a timely call for effective action.Publishers Weekly

Craig Stanford’s book makes compelling reading. In the past fifty years we have learned so much about our closest relatives the great apes. They have helped us better understand our own behavior. Now it is our turn to help them, and when you read this book, you will realize that we MUST.—Jane Goodall, PhD, DBE, Founder, the Jane Goodall Institute, and U.N. Messenger of Peace

Craig Stanford’s new book appears at a turning point: will we take active steps to save our ape sibling species or accept certain disgrace in the eyes of coming generations?—Roger Fouts, Professor Emeritus, Central Washington University

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