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Of Bonobos and Men: A Journey to the Heart of the Congo [Format Kindle]

Deni Ellis Béchard

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Présentation de l'éditeur

Bonobos have captured the public imagination in recent years, due not least to their famously active sex lives. Less well known is the fact that these great apes don’t kill their own kind, and that they share nearly 99% of our DNA. Their approach to building peaceful coalitions and sharing resources has much to teach us, particularly at a time when our violent ways have pushed them to the brink of extinction. Animated by a desire to understand bonobos and learn how to save them, acclaimed author Deni Ellis Béchard traveled into the Congo.

Of Bonobos and Men is the account of this journey. Along the way, we see how partnerships between Congolese and Westerners, with few resources but a common purpose and respect for indigenous knowledge, have resulted in the protection of vast swaths of the rainforest. And we discover how small solutions—found through openness, humility, and the principle that “poverty does not equal ignorance”—are often most effective in tackling our biggest challenges. Combining elements of travelogue, journalism, and natural history, this incomparably rich book takes the reader not only deep into the Congo, but also into our past and future, revealing new ways to save the environment and ourselves.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 5235 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 364 pages
  • Editeur : Milkweed Editions (1 octobre 2013)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Activé
  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°497.439 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)

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Amazon.com: 4.5 étoiles sur 5  8 commentaires
5 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 a fantastic account of a really important mission 9 décembre 2013
Par Jesse Duggan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
fantastic book, as soon as I finished I wanted to somehow get involved. a really incredible story of modern day heroes doing something for the greater good
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Insightful, moving, and entertaining 1 février 2014
Par Austin S. Lin - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
Empty Hands, Open Arms provides a compelling insight into the history and evolution of bonobo conservation in the Congo. There are lessons within for all of us who are trying to save our planet.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Empty Hands holds a mirror to ourselves through the bonobo conservation story... 2 avril 2014
Par Pyotr Patrushev - Publié sur Amazon.com
I have been watching the evolving and the tragic story of the bonobos for years. This is not only the best book on the subject, but also a fascinating journey through the "small history" of one project into the "Big History" of humanity as a whole. The blend of personal biographies, conservation politics, local lore, and evolutionary recaps is most enlightening.

This story is hugely important for us symbolically. I have long held a view that were it not for the bonobo genes in us which get expressed occasionally when times or environments are "good" for the human ape, we would have long ago exterminated ourselves.

The whole bonobo saga right now does not imbue me with any sense of hope (I have just come back from China and I can tell you, the majority of mankind does not give a hoot (I hope Jane Goodall will forgives) about endangered tigers or hippos or bonobos.

But books like Empty Hands allow us to hold a mirror to ourselves, just like Rachael Carson's The Silent Spring did for me, inspiring years of conservation broadcasts.

Not much has changed on the ground since the 60's, except maybe for the worse, what with the population growth and the general consumer frenzy that is also built into the genes of the short-sighted, ecocidal, pleasure seeking, twittering human primate.

However, I was absolutely awed by the courage, dedication, humility and selflessness of the BCI staff and their local collaborators, paid and unpaid. I worked in Lebanon and the Caucasus for the NGOs but Congo seemed really daunting to me. I also appreciate the dedication, the courage and the objectivity of Deni Béchard, the author of this book.

I hope this book will be taken seriously by the various conservation groups and the NGOs around the world, as it espouses the only effective "participatory" model of conservation, not the glory, kudos, and grant-seeking path pursued by many large groups and foundations.

Unfortunately, the only radical "solution" to the problem of ecocide practised by humanity on ever-larger scale I see (I have written a "science truth" novel Project Nirvana along these lines), is reducing human population by at least  (that will give a breathing space of maybe 25-50 years) and then working towards creating a bonobo/photosynthetic hybrid. Of course, I present this "solution" with a bit of wry smile :), as a literary satire.

Get to work, folks! Time HAS run out...
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 An engaging read that's hard to put down.... 1 février 2014
Par McGillicuddy E. Phillips - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
“Empty Hands, Open Arms” is a highly engaging read. Bechard smoothly moves from page-turning anecdotes to well researched narrative in a way that keeps the reader intrigued and immersed in the subject. This is the kind of book that anyone will find appealing because it covers a surprisingly wide-range of issues but never strays too far from intimate, human stories. From colonial history to human and ape evolution, this is one of those books that will change how one sees the world and our relationship with our closest primate cousins.

It was fascinatingly to learn how different bonobo societies are from chimps and other great apes. Learning that bonobos have a matriarchal social structure and live together in relative harmony is pretty intriguing and somewhat provocative. Also, it was fascinating to learn more about the Congo rainforest – the earth’s “second lung” – and its crucial importance to global warming issues.

This book helped me better understand international conservation issues. I am familiar with the intricacies of my local environmental issues but, like many, know of only a few massive, international conservation organizations (NGO’s). ‘Empty Hands, Opens Arms’ will help anyone who cares about conservation to get familiar with the important and unique role small NGO’s play in the international arena. For example, I was surprised to learn how and why some indigenous people may see large conservation groups as imperialists and more destructive to their way of life than industrial corporations. This was eye opening to say the least.

One more thing I loved about this book is the way Bechard brought to the fore the compelling human stories of those working to save bonobos and those living in closest proximity to them. In short, I found this book to be worthy of the accolades it has earned.
3 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Read about the GOOD happening in the world! 1 février 2014
Par Linsey Hurley - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
This is a masterfully written book about how, a small organization has done tremendous work to change the world.
Anthropologist Margaret Mead said: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."
This is an inspiring case in point - and it reads like an adventure novel.
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