How NOT to raise an ape in your family

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20 Responses to “How NOT to raise an ape in your family”

  1. allhart says:

    For a more positive take on the same scientific impulse, I recommend Next of Kin by Roger Fouts; he spent 30 years raising, teaching and communicating with Washoe via ASL.

  2. noen says:

    No vladis, I suspect he meant deaf. As in able to differentiate the echo returning from glass vs denim vs velvet. I thing even I could tell them apart by touch.

    As for the nature/nurture debate. My understanding is that it shouldn’t even be put in those terms. It’s too simplistic. It goes both ways and your genes select the environment in which to express themselves.

  3. gr33nshoes says:

    Valdis,

    Right on – blind not deaf – oops!

  4. ill lich says:

    “I collect books by people who have raised apes in their homes.”

    –Boy if I had a dollar for every time I heard THAT.

  5. Sekino says:

    It’s ironic that despite the research acknowledging the emotional and affective abilities of the chimp, the poor thing still ended up being discarded like a mere tool. After being doted on like a human child by human ‘parents’, it was probably extremely distressing for Gua to adapt to different circumstances. No wonder she died soon after.

    I also wonder what effect it had on Donald to see his ‘sister’ abandoned in this fashion. This is not like losing a pet: They shared formative years together, as peers.

    I think this study’s most striking result is that even while closely studying emotion and intelligence for years, some humans can be totally out of touch from either.

  6. buddy66 says:

    One day Kellog took both chimp and child out into the garden where there was an old-fashioned but functioning water pump. As he guided little Donald’s hand into the stream of water, he said “Water.”

    “Wa-Wa,” the boy said.

    Then he did the same with the little chimp. “Water,” Kellog said.

    The chimp got wet.

  7. Anonymous says:

    You will be sad to here that a young elephant passed away at Chester Zoo after developing a virus. We were down on holiday from Scotland, staying at one of the Ramada hotels in Chester, when we had taken the kids to the Zoo as a holiday treat – but me and my partner over heard the news, poor thing. The kids did not know anything so they had a great time. Apart from that I would still recommend the Zoo to anyone who loves animals.

  8. tallpat says:

    This kinda reminds me of the story of my great-great-great-aunt Gertrude.

  9. Xopher says:

    Stamp out Behaviorism in our lifetime, I say.

    Unconscionably abusive, both to the child and the chimp. I bet a list of Behaviorists who never did anything terrible to their children is identical to a list of childless Behaviorists.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Is there any mention of their chicken wire mother?

  11. cjp says:

    The film is a little horrifying by the end. I used to take a class with Birute Galdikas and she would often look for students to watch her kids. They behaved much like orangutans, with whom they lived in Borneo for most of the year. They were highly skilled climbers and much louder than the average child. It was an unspoken rule- never offer to babysit the Galdikas kids!

  12. Nadreck says:

    Shades of Tarzan!

    So, human children really do become more ape-like if raised with ape siblings. I guess Burroughs knew what he was talking about after all! ;-)

  13. slida says:

    That made me really sad.

  14. Anonymous says:

    That’s really quite tragic in the end!

    I live near Chester Zoo in the UK- and by complete coincidence once came across a book about one of the Chester zoo keepers who raised a chimp in her home with her children comparing development. It was called er…LITTLE BROTHER (good title :-)) and was by June Johns and published 1970 – and just looked and there are a couple on Amazon co.uk if you’re interested (and haven’t come across it already).

    She had to let the chimp go because it got too big and difficult to handle, I think…

  15. Clare Dudman says:

    That’s really interesting but sad and tragic in the end!

    I live near Chester Zoo in the UK- and by complete coincidence once came across a book about one of the Chester zoo keepers who raised a chimp in her home with her children comparing development. It was called er…LITTLE BROTHER (good title :-)) and was by June Johns and published 1970 – and just looked and there are a couple on Amazon co.uk if you’re interested (and haven’t come across it already).

    She had to let the chimp go because it got too big and difficult to handle, I think…

  16. Machineintheghost says:

    Meanwhile, millions of lonely people, for the most part without advanced degrees in psychology or biology, are unknowingly conducting parallel experiments on kittens and puppies, attempting to raise them as if they were human children. So far, no success.

  17. Brainspore says:

    I wonder how Mrs. Kellogg felt about breastfeeding.

  18. gr33nshoes says:

    As an undergraduate psychology major I practically lived in the Kellogg research building at Florida State. A case was set up in honor of him with some instruments he used. He was really quite a fascinating individual – Winthrop Niles Kellogg also studied echolocation in porpoises…and humans. It turns out that humans deaf from birth can differentiate not only glass from denim, but denim from velvet. “…denim cloth and velvet were differentiated 86.5% of the time.”

    http://www.psy.fsu.edu//history/wnk/

  19. valdis says:

    @gr33nshoes:

    I think you meant “humans *blind* from birth”?

  20. Anonymous says:

    After studying and sketching chimps at the Portland Zoo for a few days, my son and I wrote and illustrated a picture book for children called *The Boy Who Went Ape*. It was not a scientific endeavor, but we did key in on our inner apes. One chimp in particular, Delilah, was my age at the time (57) and would pose for me as I did quick charcoal studies, she was then curious to see the resulting pictures. I always have mixed feelings about animals in captivity. We learn about them. They on the other hand are fed and safe, but have lost their freedom.

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