Humans are direct descendants from monkeys. They tell us loads about ourselves. Many of our impulses and behaviors, stuff we consider uniquely ours, are remnants, if not spin-offs, from their nature…
To know what one is, one must appreciate what one was and where one comes from…
Humans are direct descendants of monkeys. Looking at them is informative and revelational. Monkeys have a lot to show us about ourselves. Many of our impulses and behaviors, stuff we consider uniquely ours, are remnants, if not spin-offs, from their nature. Our curiosity and sociability, our obsession with our babies and our understanding of death, our heightened self-awareness, our ability to farm and wage warfare – all of them are qualities and activities linked to our monkey ancestors.
In his documentary Clever Monkeys, David Attenborough takes a ravishing look into the lives of these prototype sapients, offering us a chance to know them (and ourselves) a little better. A look in the mirror, so to speak, it sheds light on traits that endured millions of years of evolution, some for the better, others for the worse.
Note: Fanatics who reject evolution may wish to turn the other way. Their belief systems run the risk of being irrevocably damaged. But I urge them to watch all the same. They’ll find themselves in there somewhere with the rest of us.
Yes, we’re all in there. Fighters, lovers, dreamers, worriers, philosophers, networkers, inventors and scientists, believers, upstarts, thieves and philanthropists, laborers, bosses, organizers, entertainers, fools of all kinds – one huge simian party that has evolved over time to span the globe.
Let me put it another way. If humanity were a guest on This Is Your Life, this documentary would be Part One of the family album.