This tripartite study of the monkey metaphor, the monkey performance, and the 'special status' people traces changes in Japanese culture from the eighth century to the present. During early periods of Japanese history the monkey's nearness to the human-animal boundary made it a revered mediator or an animal deity closest to humans. Later it became a scapegoat mocked for its vain efforts to behave in a human fashion. Modern Japanese have begun to see a new meaning in the monkey--a clown who turns itself into an object of laughter while challenging the basic assumptions of Japanese culture and society.
This is a story about a monkey named Mandy. She looks at herself differently when she is comparing herself to others. She realizes that after trying to be like everyone else she loses her own identity. Meet Mandy's friend Georgia giraffe, Ella elephant, and Farrah flamingo who open Mandy's eyes to her unique nature and beauty!
Monkey Forest is a happy place, until monkey Merlin stumbles upon a magic mirror that gives him vast power over the other monkeys. He seizes the opportunity and reigns as the vicious King Merlin, until one day a curious little monkey named Koko discovers his secret... This imaginative picture book, written by Nersel zur Muehlen (Little Green Bird, Imaginary Toys) is beautifully illustrated by Sara Sanchez and illustrates the dark side of unjustified power and the power of curiosity.
The fundamental questions of our origins, along with our evolutionary future, find new life in this extraordinary book. In this superb collection of essays, eminent scientist, Ian Tattersall takes up some of the most controversial questions in evolutionary history. He argues that far from being finely engineered organisms, we are in fact improvised beings, owing as much to chance as adaptation. Tattersall leads us around the world and into the far reaches of the past, and reveals the complexities of the science of human evolution.
Mirror Neurons and the Evolution of Brain and Language
The emergence of language, social intelligence, and tool development are what made homo sapiens sapiens differentiate itself from all other biological species in the world. The use of language and the management of social and instrumental skills imply an awareness of intention and the consideration that one faces another individual with an attitude analogical to that of one's own. The metaphor of 'mirror' aptly comes to mind.Recent investigations have shown that the human ability to 'mirror' other's actions originates in the brain at a much deeper level than phenomenal awareness. A new class of neurons has been discovered in the premotor area of the monkey brain: 'mirror neurons'. Quite remarkably, they are tuned to fire to the enaction as well as observation of specific classes of behavior: fine manual actions and actions performed by mouth. They become activated independent of the agent, be it the self or a third person whose action is observed. The activation in mirror neurons is automatic and binds the observation and enaction of some behavior by the self or by the observed other. The peculiar first-to-third-person 'intersubjectivity' of the performance of mirror neurons and their surprising complementarity to the functioning of strategic communicative face-to-face (first-to-second person) interaction may shed new light on the functional architecture of conscious vs. unconscious mental processes and the relationship between behavioral and communicative action in monkeys, primates, and humans. The present volume discusses the nature of mirror neurons as presented by the research team of Prof. Giacomo Rizzolatti (University of Parma), who originally discovered them, and the implications to our understanding of the evolution of brain, mind and communicative interaction in non-human primates and man.(Series B)
Filled with stories and scientific insight, a collection of humorous essays takes readers around the world and transports them back in time, revealing what the science of human evolution is up against.