Jane Goodall

Jane Goodall

In the summer of 1960, a young Englishwoman arrived on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Tanzania, East Africa. Although it was unheard of for a woman to venture into the wilds of the African forest, going meant the fulfillment of Jane Goodall's childhood dream.

Encouraged by her mother, Vanne, Goodall's lifelong fascination with animals began at an early age. Throughout her childhood she read avidly about wild animals, dreaming about living like Tarzan and Dr. Doolittle and writing about the animals with whom she lived.

As a young lady, her passion grew stronger. And when a close friend invited her to Kenya in 1957, Jane readily accepted. Within a few months of her arrival she met the famed anthropologist and paleontologist, Dr. Louis Leakey. One of Leakey's interests was to study wild chimpanzees in order to gain insight into the evolutionary past of humans. Goodall's patience and persistent desire to understand animals prompted Leakey to choose her to undertake this pioneering study. He believed that a mind uncluttered by academia would yield a fresh perspective. Leakey intended for Goodall's research to be long-term, yet critics believed she would last no longer than three weeks.

In 1965, Goodall earned her Ph.D. in Ethology from Cambridge University. Soon thereafter, she returned to Tanzania to continue research and to establish the Gombe Stream Research Centre. Her profound scientific discoveries laid the foundation for all future primate studies. One of many observations that amazed the world was that of chimpanzees making and using tools. This behavior was previously believed to separate humans from other animals. And over the years her studies have shown the many striking similarities between humans and chimpanzees.

As the recipient of numerous awards and the author of many books and articles, Goodall is world-renowned and highly respected in both the scientific and lay communities. Goodall was the international recipient of the 1996 Caring Award and Sigman Xi's 1996 William Proctor Prize for Scientific Achievement. In 1995, Goodall received the National Geographic Society's prestigious Hubbard Medal "for her extraordinary 35-year study of wild chimpanzees and for tirelessly defending the natural world we share." Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has awarded her the Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1995, as well as Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2003; and she is the only non-Tanzanian to have received the Medal of Tanzania.

Seeds of Hope

Wisdom and Wonder from the World of Plants

Grand Central Publishing, 2013

Renowned naturalist and bestselling author Jane Goodall examines the critical role that trees and plants play in our world.

In her wise and elegant new book, Jane Goodall blends her experience in nature with her enthusiasm for botany to give readers a deeper understanding of the world around us.

Long before her work with chimpanzees, Goodall's passion for the natural world sprouted in the backyard of her childhood home in England, where she climbed her beech tree and made elderberry wine with her grandmother. The garden her family began then, she continues to enjoy today.

SEEDS OF HOPE takes us from England to Goodall's home-away-from-home in Africa, deep inside the Gombe forest, where she and the chimpanzees are enchanted by the fig and plum trees they encounter. She introduces us to botanists around the world, as well as places where hope for plants can be found, such as The Millennium Seed Bank, where one billion seeds are preserved. She shows us the secret world of plants with all their mysteries and potential for healing our bodies as well as Planet Earth.

Looking at the world as an adventurer, scientist, and devotee of sustainable foods and gardening-and setting forth simple goals we can all take to protect the plants around us-Jane Goodall delivers an enlightening story of the wonders we can find in our own backyards.

Hope for Animals and Their World

How Endangered Species Are Being Rescued from the Brink

Grand Central Publishing, 2009

At a time when animal species are becoming extinct on every continent and we are confronted with bad news about the environment nearly every day, Jane Goodall, one of the world's most renowned scientists, brings us inspiring news about the future of the animal kingdom. With the insatiable curiosity and conversational prose that have made her a bestselling author, Goodall—along with Cincinnati Zoo Director Thane Maynard—shares fascinating survival stories about the American Crocodile, the California Condor, the Black-Footed Ferret, and more; all formerly endangered species and species once on the verge of extinction whose populations are now being regenerated.

Interweaving her own first-hand experiences in the field with the compelling research of premier scientists, Goodall illuminates the heroic efforts of dedicated environmentalists and the truly critical need to protect the habitats of these beloved species. At once a celebration of the animal kingdom and a passionate call to arms, Hope for Animals and Their World presents an uplifting, hopeful message for the future of animal-human coexistence.


Harvest for Hope

A Guide to Mindful Eating

With Gary McAvoy

Warner Books, 2005

For anyone who's ever wanted to know how to take a stand for a more sustainable world, renowned scientist and bestselling author Jane Goodall delivers an eye-opening call to arms that explores the social and personal significance of what we eat.

In Harvest for Hope, Goodall presents an empowering and far-reaching vision for social and environmental transformation through the way we produce and consume food. With practical, user-friendly chapters—such as "Doing Our Part: Help Farm Animals Live Better Lives," "An Organic Wave Worldwide," and "Eat Local, Eat Seasonal"—and a comprehensive resource guide, readers will discover the dangers behind many of today's foods, along with the extraordinary individual and worldwide benefits of eating mindfully. Harvest for Hope uncovers the choices that support the greater good and will preserve our own health and that of future generations.


The Ten Trusts

What We Must Do to Care for the Animals We Love

Co-authored with Marc Bekoff

HarperCollins, October 2002

Combining their life's work living among chimpanzees and coyotes and studying animals with a spiritual perspective on the interrelationship between humans and animals, world-renowned behavioral scientists Jane Goodall and Marc Bekoff set forth ten trusts that we as humans must honor as custodians of the planet. They argue passionately and persuasively that if we put these trusts to work in our lives, the whole world will be safer and more harmonious for all. The central theme of the trusts is one that both authors have been writing about for years - the importance and value of the individuals of all species. The Ten Trusts expands the concept of our obligation to live in close relationship with animals - for of course, we humans are part of the animal kingdom - challenging us to respect the interconnection between all living beings as we learn to care about them as individuals.

The world is changing. Humans beings are gradually becoming more aware of the damage we are inflicting on the natural world. We are moving toward a world where cruelty and hatred are transformed into compassion and love. At this critical moment for the earth the authors share their hope and vision for humanity and all Earth's creatures. They dream of when scientists and non-scientists can work together to create a world in which human beings can live in peace and harmony with each other, animals, and the natural world.

Simple yet profound, The Ten Trusts will not only change our perspective on how we live on this planet, they will establish our responsibilities as stewards of the natural world and show us how to live with respect for all life.


Beyond Innocence

An Autobiography in Letters: The Later Years

Edited by Dale Peterson

Houghton Mifflin, 2001

This second volume of Jane Goodall's autobiography in letters covers the years of her greatest triumphs and her deepest tragedies. During this time she made many of her most important discoveries about chimpanzee behavior -- including the dark discovery that like us, they wage war and commit murder. She gave birth to a son, Grub, but her marriage to his father, Hugo van Lawick, came to an end. When some Stanford University students working with her were kidnapped by guerrillas, she was thrust into an international controversy. She fell in love with and married Derek Bryceson. After surviving a plane crash with him, she realized that her life had been entrusted to her for a reason. A visit to an American laboratory where chimps were injected with HIV made that reason clear, and she began to dedicate herself not just to understanding chimpanzees but to saving them. Derek's death in 1980 was a terrible blow, but afterward she threw herself even more relentlessly into the battle to save our closest relatives and to repair the health of the planet.

Her previous book, Africa in My Blood, told of a young woman finding her life's work in the place of her dreams. Beyond Innocence tells of the events that shattered many of those dreams and changed her from a rather private observer to a public crusader.


Africa In My Blood

An Autobiography in Letters

Edited by Dale Peterson

Houghton Mifflin, 2000

Africa in My Blood is an extraordinary self-portrait in letters of Jane Goodall's early years, from childhood to the publication of In the Shadow of Man, revealing this remarkable woman more vividly than anything published before, by her or about her. We see her at eleven founding the Alligator Society ("You have to be able to recognize 10 birds, 10 dogs, 10 trees and 5 butterflies OR moths."); at seventeen developing a crush on the local minister ("He has a beautiful long nose and he loves dogs"); at twenty punting at Oxford—and falling out of the boat ("And I stood in the water—up to my chest—and roared and roared with laughter"); at twenty-two working at a film company and saving for a trip to Africa.

At twenty-three, she took that trip, to "the Africa I have always longed for, always felt stirring in my blood." In Kenya's White Highlands, she rode horses, danced, and developed her observational skills on both animals and men ("He is very handsome & Clo & I sat in the car admiring his bottom & feeling sorry for him because he was getting filthy and oily"). The men returned her interest ("What the devil am I to do with all these middle aged married men. They hang in multitudinous garlands from every limb and neck I've got").

The turning point of her life came when a friend told her, "If you are interested in animals, you must meet Louis Leakey." And when she did meet the legendary anthropologist, he saw in this young secretarial school graduate the ideal candidate to undertake a revolutionary study of chimpanzees. He sent her to the Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve on Lake Tanganyika, where she immersed herself in the lives of wild animals as no one had ever done before. Goodall has told this story in other books, but never so immediately and emotionally. She describes a chimp rain dance ("Every so often their wild calls rang out above the thunder. Primitive hairy men, huge and black on the skyline, flinging themselves across the ground in their primeval display of strength and power . . . Can you being to imagine how I felt? The only human ever to have witnessed such a display in all its primitive, fantastic wonder?"); a female chimp mating with five males early in the morning ("Hello - No 5 is queuing, down on the bottom branch. 'Thanks Big Boy, but don't hang around.' No 5 leaps out of the way as No 4 charges down . . . Soon over & off he goes. Now perhaps a girl can have a bite of breakfast"); a colobus monkey clasping its dead baby ("She kept trying to groom its poor little coat. Oh, it was heart rending. I'm only so glad I've never seen a chimp with a dead baby. I just couldn't bear it").

Africa in My Blood is a dramatic, moving, funny, and important book that tells the story of how an English girl who loved animals became one of the greatest scientists of the twentieth century.


Reason for Hope

A Spiritual Journey

with Phillip Berman

Warner Books, 1999

For the past 40 years, ever since she first ventured into Africa's Gombe Reserve to study chimpanzees, Dr. Jane Goodall has been regarded as the world's most important female scientist and a towering figure in the environmental and animal rights movements. Her groundbreaking work--popularized on television specials and in National Geographic magazine, as well as in her seminal 1971 book In the Shadow of Man and in countless lectures--has been described by Stephen Jay Gould as "one of the Western world's great scientific achievements." But how much do we really know about this extraordinary scientist who has literally changed the way we look at nature? In her latest book, REASON FOR HOPE: A Spiritual Journey, Jane Goodall shares her beliefs about faith and love, mysticism and science, as she recounts the dramatic pivotal events of her life.

As a scientist at Cambridge, Jane Goodall was taught to think logically and empirically rather than intuitively or spiritually. "Fortunately," she writes in REASON FOR HOPE, "my beliefs had already been molded so that I was not influenced by these opinions." Yet there have been many times when Goodall's belief in God was sorely tested, and in REASON FOR HOPE she recounts both the tragedies that brought doubt and the triumphs that reinforced her spirituality. These tales include:

Goodall's 1957 life-changing visit to Africa, where she met legendary  anthropologist and paleontologist Dr. Louis Leakey, who would set her on her way to Gombe and the chimpanzees;

the exhilarating and revolutionary discovery that chimpanzees are capable of tool making;

how observation of chimpanzees helped the author be a better mother, and how motherhood affected her understanding of chimp behavior;

the kidnapping by rebels of four of Goodall's students in Gombe National Park, and the unspeakable violence erupting between ethnic factions throughout Africa;

the love and compassion--and the controversial incidences of violence observed among the chimpanzees;
the heart-wrenching death of Goodall's second husband, Derek, and the healing she found in the forests of Gombe.

Throughout the book, from the author's account of her intensely religious childhood in war-torn England to her recent efforts to promote environmental protection, Jane Goodall maintains a deeply spiritual outlook that profoundly colors her life and her work and sheds light on some of the 20th century's most important discoveries.

For all of those hungry for meaning, REASON FOR HOPE will show how Jane Goodall transformed her own life and provide inspiration for all of us hoping to rekindle our spirits and reawaken our minds.


Through a Window

Houghton Mifflin, 2000

Through A Window is the dramatic saga of thirty years in the life of a community, of birth and death, sex and love, power and war. It reads like a novel, but it is one of the most important scientific works ever published. The community is Gombe, on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, where the principal residents are chimpanzees and one extraordinary woman who is their student, protector, and historian. In her classic In the Shadow of Man, Jane Goodall wrote of her first ten years at Gombe. In Through a Window she brings the story up to the present, painting a much more complete and vivid portrait of our closest relative. We see the community split in two and a brutal war break out. We watch young Figan's relentless rise to power and old Mike's crushing defeat. We learn how one mother rears her children to succeed and another dooms them to failure. We witness horrifying murders, touching moments of affection, joyous births, and wrenching deaths. In short, we see every emotion known to humans stripped to its essence. In the mirror of chimpanzee life, we see ourselves reflected. Perhaps the best book ever written about animal behavior, Through A Window is also essential reading for anyone seeking a better grasp of human behavior.


My Life with the Chimpanzees

Minstrel Books, 1996

The celebrated naturalist recounts her childhood wish to work with animals and her excursions into the wilds of Africa, where she performed history-making studies on the leopards, lions, and, especially, chimpanzees there.

Jane Goodall | A National Geographic Retrospective

Jane Goodall has taught the world more about chimpanzees than anyone else in the world. Her dream to study our closest relatives began in 1960 in Gombe Park, Tanzania, and she continues her work to save them today.


TEDTalks: May 26, 2007 | Jane Goodall: What separates us from the apes?

Jane Goodall hasn't found the missing link, but she's come closer than nearly anyone else. The primatologist says the only real difference between humans and chimps is our sophisticated language. She urges us to start using it to change the world.


CBS' 60 Minutes: October 24, 2010 | Jane Goodal and Her Chimps

Jane Goodall brings Lara Logan and "60 Minutes" cameras back to the forests of Tanzania, where she began her love affair with chimpanzees 50 years ago, to remind the public that chimps are endangered.

Due to her busy travel schedule, Dr. Goodall is not able to accept email messages personally, but you are encouraged to contact the Jane Goodall Institute regarding Jane's schedule of events, lectures, appearances, and how you can help support the causes she champions.