Jane Goodall, an acclaimed primatologist, turns 80 this week. It was her research on a community of chimpanzees in Tanzania that changed the understanding of people across the globe with regard to the primates.
Not only, Goodall revolutionized our understanding, but she also challenged our deepest idea of what it means to be human. In an interview when she was asked whether the fluffy character has influenced Goodall since her childhood. Goodall replied she had never thought to work with chimpanzees.
In fact, she wanted to be a naturalist. Her knowledge of natural history led Louis Leakey, the eminent palaeoanthropologist to offer her a job. Goodall along with Leakey and his wife, Mary went to an expedition to Olduvai Gorge, now northern Tanzania.
Leaky then came up with an idea of carrying out a complementary study on wild chimpanzees to the west at Gombe Stream Chimpanzee Reserve. In 1960, Goodall started her research at the reserve. Since then, Goodall
has been doing intricate research on chimps in the wild.
Goodall had received around 50 honorary degrees and also became a UN Messenger of Peace in 2002. She is regularly invited on workshops, seminars and meetings. Recently, she visited Kern County, where she shared about the advancements that have come in technology.
Goodall said she started with pen and a notepad and did her analysis with side ruler. But now there will be many people who would not even be aware of it.