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Publisher's Summary

Roger Fouts fulfilled humankind's age-old dream of talking to animals by pioneering communication with chimpanzees through sign language. Now, in Next of Kin, Fouts tells the dramatic story of his odyssey from novice researcher to celebrity scientist and caretaker of a family of chimpanzees, to his impassioned awakening as a crusader for the rights of animals.
At the heart of this captivating audiobook is Fouts's magical 30-year friendship with Washoe, the chimpanzee he met when she jumped into his arms. We follow Washoe as she grows from a mischievous baby chimp fresh out of the NASA space program into the matriarch of a clan of chimpanzees. Living and conversing with these sensitive creatures has given Fouts a profound appreciation of how much we share with our closest biological relatives, and what they can teach us about ourselves.
This stirring tale of friendship, courage, and compassion will change forever the way we view our biological - and spiritual - Next of Kin.
©1997 Roger Fouts (P)1997 Simon & Schuster
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Critic Reviews

"A remarkable personal saga . . . and a searingly honest account of just what has happened, arid is all too often still happening, to these marvelously intelligent creatures." (Cleveland Amory)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Rozsika Steele on 04-19-11

deeply moving story

This is my favorite book. It reads like a novel. a love story.

"It was Washoe who taught me that human is only an adjective that describes being. The essence of who I am is not my humanness, but my beingness" Roger Fouts, Next of Kin

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Elizabeth Bohannon on 02-05-17

Compassion in Action

I was mesmerized, horrified, uplifted, transformed by this important story of understanding and compassion. I, too, was taught that humans are unique because they have conscience and compassion. So, so wrong. I am grateful for the opportunity to learn the truth. The more I learn, the more I see that we humans are, indeed, unique; but not for attributes that render us "superior." Rather, we are unique among animals in our penchant for combining innate animal aggression with uniquely human narcissism to inflict suffering on other creatures, including members of our own species, far beyond anything seen in nature. This story hardens my resolve to cultivate compassion with the time I have left.

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