Watching: Encounters with Humans and Other Animals

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This wonderful recollection begins with a shy young boy who, while everyone else was dancing on the streets, celebrated the World War II Allied victory by observing a colony of rooks. After studying the behavioral habits of the 10-spined stickleback at Oxford, Desmond Morris became curator of mammals at London Zoo and quickly became a familiar figure in homes all over Britain as presenter of Zootime, delighting millions of tea-time viewers with a daring attempt to pick up a deadly scorpion by its tail or a tumble...

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2007-09-28 Hardcover 1St Edition New 1904435548 Ships Within 24 Hours. Tracking Number available for all USA orders. Excellent Customer Service. Upto 15 Days 100% Money Back ... Gurantee. Try Our Fast! ! ! ! Shipping With Tracking Number. Read more Show Less

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Overview

This wonderful recollection begins with a shy young boy who, while everyone else was dancing on the streets, celebrated the World War II Allied victory by observing a colony of rooks. After studying the behavioral habits of the 10-spined stickleback at Oxford, Desmond Morris became curator of mammals at London Zoo and quickly became a familiar figure in homes all over Britain as presenter of Zootime, delighting millions of tea-time viewers with a daring attempt to pick up a deadly scorpion by its tail or a tumble off the back of an elephant. As curator of mammals at the zoo, life was as bizarre behind the cameras as in front of them, not least when a whale turned up in the Thames River or when a pair of ferocious bears escaped and caused havoc in a restroom. In 1967, Morris turned his attention to humans. Since then he has continued his work on human and animal species, written many other successful books, and has presented a number of television series. His travels have taken him to some 60 countries, from the cities of North America to the islands off the Mediterranean, Europe, the Pacific, and Africa. This account tells the story of many of these adventures, in fascinating and often hilarious detail.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

American readers will most likely remember zoologist Morris as author of 1967's The Naked Ape,a pop science bestseller highlighting the similarities between human behavior and that of other members of the animal kingdom. But his voluminous autobiography devotes very little space to that success, which played only a small part in his fame in England, where he hosted the television show Zootime.Chapter upon chapter is replete with anecdotes about what can go wrong when taping a show with live animals, as well as the offstage antics of his chimpanzee sidekick, Congo. After The Naked Apebecame an international sensation, Morris and his wife decamped to Malta, setting up another long string of charming stories about the life as an ex-pat Brit, with guest appearances by fellow naturalist David Attenborough. (There's also a memorable cameo, much later, by Marlon Brando, wanting to discuss the banality of evil over dinner.) The final chapter is devoted to a lengthy diary of a three-month cruise around the world, in which Morris no longer bothers trying to shape his digressive storytelling, but simply lets his impressions flow. The tone is enjoyably amiable, but it's questionable whether Morris, now almost 80, still registers on the U.S. cultural radar. Photos. (Oct.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Library Journal

Zoologist Morris, the author of such best sellers as The Naked Apeand Intimate Behavior, writes that the world is filled with wonderful pleasures for anyone "who manages to maintain an inquisitive eye, a childlike wonder and a sense of humor." Judging from this delightful memoir, Morris has managed to retain these qualities throughout his long and varied life. In his youth, Morris's passions centered on animals and painting. Eventually, these interests led to jobs as curator of mammals at the London Zoo, host of the British television show Zootime, and director of the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. Financial success from his best-selling books allowed him to move to Malta, travel worldwide, and write many more books about animal and human behavior. This lengthy autobiography is basically the combination of two previous books, Animals Days(1979) and The Naked Eye(2001). Of the 80 chapters, only eight are new: three fill in the time period between these books, and the remaining five add some new episodes to the latter book. There are several new photos as well. Libraries owning the two original books may pass on this one. Otherwise, this absorbing and entertaining memoir is highly recommended for academic and public libraries.
—Ilse Heidmann

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781904435549
  • Publisher: Little Books, Limited
  • Publication date: 9/28/2007
  • Pages: 624
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 2.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Desmond Morris's previous books include The Human ZooIntimate Behavior, Manwatching, The Naked Ape, and The Naked Woman.

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