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Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey Paperback – Bargain Price, October 1, 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; (3rd) edition (October 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446676136
  • ASIN: B000LP66V6
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #301,620 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

As a young woman, Jane Goodall was best known for her groundbreaking fieldwork with the chimpanzees of Gombe, Africa. Goodall's work has always been controversial, mostly because she broke the mold of research scientist by developing meaningful relationships with her "specimens" and honoring their lives as she would other humans.

Now at the age of 60, she continues to break the mold of scientist by revealing how her research and worldwide conservation institutes spring from her childhood callings and adult spiritual convictions. Reason for Hope is a smoothly written memoir that does not shy away from facing the realities of environmental destruction, animal abuse, and genocide. But Goodall shares her antidote to the poison of despair with specific examples of why she has not lost faith. For instance, she shares her spiritual epiphany during a visit to Auschwitz; her bravery in the face of chimpanzee imprisonment in medical laboratories; and devotes a whole chapter to individuals, corporations, and countries that are doing the right thing. But most of all Goodall provides a beautifully written plea for why everyone can and must find a reason for hope. --Gail Hudson --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

The world's most famous, and perhaps most beloved, female scientist has previously related much of her life's outer journeyAmost notably in In the Shadow of Man and Through a Window, which described her groundbreaking work with the chimpanzees of Gombe, in Africa. In this marvelous book, however, Goodall revealsAwith clarity, great passion and purposeAher inner journey. How invigorating it is to read the memoir of a scientist who proclaims frankly, and in language often infused with power and grace (a nod to Goodall's coauthor Berman, author of The Journey Home, etc.), an abiding faith in the sacredness of all life. Goodall, who's 65, covers her entire life here, from her earliest years in England, raised by a strong and loving family, through her apprenticeship under Louis Leakey and her years at Gombe, to her more recent work as an activist for environmental causes and animal rights. There are passages that verge on the mystical ("I and the chimpanzees, the earth and trees and air, seemed to merge, to become one with the spirit power of life itself"), a scattering of not terrific poems and great swaths of rapturous nature writing. The book's tone is highly emotional, sometimes sentimental, but Goodall is no naif. A chapter entitled "The Roots of Evil" describes her shocking discovery of chimps' capacity for cannibalistic attacks on members of their own community; "Death" details her despair at the suffering and demise of her husband, Derek, from cancer. Despite the darkness, however, throughout her life's adventuresAand there are enough, in jungle and city, to make this book viscerally as well as morally thrillingAGoodall has nurtured a fundamental understanding that goodness can prevail, with each person's help. This is a moving and inspiring book that will be treasured by all concerned about the fate of the planet and its inhabitants. 16 pp. of b&w photos. Simultaneous Warner AudioBook; author tour. (Sept.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

More About the Author

JANE GOODALL continues to study and write about primate behavior. She founded the Gombe Stream Research Center in Gombe National Park, Tanzania, and the Jane Goodall Institute for Wild Life Research, Education, and Conservation to provide ongoing support for field research on wild chimpanzees. She is the author of many books, including two autobiographies in letters, Africa in My Blood and Beyond Innocence. Today Dr. Goodall spends much of her time lecturing, sharing her message of hope for the future, and encouraging young people to make a difference in their world.

Customer Reviews

Do something good for your 'goodness' and read this book.
n2peace
She helps the reader to understand why we, as individuals, must speak up and do whatever good we can to protect all animals and to better ourselves as human beings.
Sandra D. Peters
Jane Goodall is my hero, and the inspiration I gather from her gives my life so much purpose and hope.
Discordia5

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

193 of 204 people found the following review helpful By Paula JP on November 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In this rich and rewarding autobiographical journey - from infant to wizened woman in her sixth decade - Jane Goodall shares her life-defining experiences including her mentorship by Louis Leakey, the observations of chimpanzees that made her famous, and her significant relationships. The reader is right there with her through learning experiences and personal struggles and may be surprised to know about the difficulties and sacrifices even the lucky, gifted and famous have to make. Jane Goodall frequently calls on her grandmother's favorite scripture for comfort in inclement times, "as thy days, so shall thy strength be." Goodall's accounts and insightful realizations give courage and perspective for dealing with the hardship and obstacles in our own lives.
One of the things I value most about this book is that Goodall addresses ethical and spiritual dimensions of science and conservation. Most scientists do not publicly discuss these larger ethical dilemmas or they sometimes engage in them but lose perspective in balancing human needs with those of other living creatures. Jane Goodall is not only willing and able to discuss these complex dimensions, but the outcome is helpful and thought-provoking.
If I were a professor in any of the sciences (esp. biology, genetics, and environmental studies) or ethics, I would leap at the opportunity to make this required reading. In her broad and clear way, Jane Goodall touches on many of the key issues and interrelations that scientists (budding or established) need to be aware of but will not find in a science textbook.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Nancy Wisser on March 28, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Jane Goodall reaches out to all who care for the earth and living things. Those involved in nature causes know the phenomenon of seeing so much irreparable wrong that life and effort begin to seem futile. Here is a book with at least a temporary antidote for depair. Goodall is not and does not pretend to be a great prose stylist. Maybe the simple straightforward words serve to advance her points. Her frank examination of a lifetime of ideas about spirituality is lit with sincerity, courage, and a willingness to share her most beautiful and moving moments. We return to the old question: what is spiritual, really? Does it have to do with churches or with moments of beauty and love given to us in nature and with those near to our hearts? She is not a Pollyanna, however, and shares with us enough of the dark of human behavior and the modern world to let us know she sees the same world we do. Thus, when she goes on to assert her belief in hope and the worth of continuing to act toward a better world, we have to listen and try in our hearts whether, even in the face of what we know to be true, we cannot learn again to believe. Most movingly, she admits that in accepting the imperative to do what she can to make a difference, she has had to give up the precious golden hours she once spent with the chimps. Even after her beautiful descriptions of those early magical times, we can only glimpse the poignant loss that this must be for her. Herein is the example set for all those of us who have had those moving and holy moments with nature: that from those to whom much has been given, much is to be expected.Read more ›
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67 of 77 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 17, 1999
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey, by Jane Goodall with Phillip Berman, Warner Books, 1999, New York. by Marc Bekoff Reason for Hope is an amazing book by a most-amazing woman. Jane Goodall's autobiography is easy to read and will appeal to people of all ages. She writes about highly personal issues and reflects on science, religion, and spirituality. Goodall is clearly a "Jane of all trades and master of many." She wears many hats and she wears them well. Goodall is a naturalist at heart, can do multivariate statistics, write about God and spirituality, be a faithful and committed mother and wife, and find time tirelessly to share her experiences world-wide. There is so much between its covers that one can only offer a glimpse of the numerous topics that are considered in Reason for Hope. This very personal book touches on diverse issues ranging from practical matters we all face daily to more philosophical questions concerning the meaning of life and spirituality. We learn about the events in Goodall's development that led to her views of the world, the incredible importance of family and friends, her work with Louis Leakey (her incredulity when he chose her to begin studies of chimpanzees although, and perhaps because, she had no formal training and no degree), field studies of chimpanzee behavior, conservation biology, environmental ethics, evolution and its relationship to creationism, cultural evolution, the agonizing death of Goodall's husband, Derek, the ins and outs of how much science is done behind the scenes, science and politics, and how so many scientists shy away from confronting the ethical issues that are raised by "doing science.Read more ›
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