Chimpanzees have Jane Goodall, orangutans have Birute Galdikas, and Madagascar’s lemurs have Alison Jolly. The veteran of forty years of lemur research in southern Madagascar’s Berenty Reserve, former Earthwatch principal investigator Dr. Alison Jolly is the author of the new book, Lords and Lemurs: Mad Scientists, Kings with Spears, and the Survival of Diversity in Madagascar.
Jolly’s remarkable book takes us deep into the forests of Berenty, a small reserve in the south of Madagascar, where the author studies the physical and social dynamics of a primate species uncannily like our own: the ringtailed lemur. But Jolly goes beyond biology to explore the people and history of Madagascar in fascinating detail. Part science and part drama, Lords and Lemurs reads like a novel, but gives the reader an intimate glimpse of the life and trials of a world-class field scientist. The book is a wonderfully human story played out against an exotic backdrop of cattle thieving, sacrifices, scientific discovery, and the deserts and jungles of southern Madagascar.
Lords and Lemurs: Mad Scientists, Kings with Spears, and the Survival of Diversity in Madagascar. Alison Jolly. Houghton-Mifflin, 2004.