The field of primatology has grown to become very complex and now incorporates information from molecular genetics, physiology, and brain studies. Many of the texts imparting this information are much too advanced for undergraduate students. Pia Nystrom & Pamela Ashmore present to you a comprehensive text written about nonhuman primates built from the ground up written for the undergraduate student.
The Life of Primates, 1/e helps students tackle the complex ideas and issues of primatology by first establishing the context and groundwork from which these studies were conducted.
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Both Pia Nystrom & Pamela Ashmore are university teachers and researchers. They have known each other since graduate school and over the years have remained friends and colleagues. Both authors have worked with primates in both captive and field situations and have endeavored to bring their passion for this field of study to students of every age. They each have their own story about how and why they selected primatology as their chosen field of study.
Nystrom came to the field almost by chance, as she initially had her heart set on discovering the Miocene ape which was the progenitor to our own lineage. However, all those plans changed in 1984 when she was given the opportunity to visit the Awash National Park in Ethiopia, to participate in a long-term baboon research project directed by Jane Phillips-Conroy and Cliff Jolly. In her first encounter with a real, live baboon, one look into its eyes changed everything: those eyes reflected such curiosity and intelligence. It was those eyes that spurred Nystrom on to study primate social behavior and to develop an interest in primate cognitive ability.
Early in life Ashmore journeyed to exotic places with anthropologists featured in the pages of National Geographic magazine. She was also an observer of virtually any form of animal life that she stumbled across in the woods of New England where she spent most of her childhood. To the chagrin of her parents many a creature came home for short visits so that she could observe them. As she was sitting in an undergraduate anthropology course taught by Michael Park, she realized that primatology was how she could, in fact, combine her interest in anthropology with her passion for animals.
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