We chose to pair two recent releases, The Genius of Birds and Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are, because each brings to light the idea that animal minds are far more intricate and complex than we have assumed, giving us pause to rethink everything we thought we knew about animal and human intelligence.
The Genius of Birds By Jennifer Ackerman
In The Genius of Birds, acclaimed author Jennifer Ackerman explores the newly discovered brilliance of birds and how it came about. Ackerman delves deeply into the latest findings about the bird brain itself that are revolutionizing our view of what it means to be intelligent. In fact, according to some revolutionary new research, some birds rival primates and even humans in their remarkable forms of intelligence. And, like humans, many birds have enormous brains relative to their size. Although small, bird brains are packed with neurons that allow them to punch well above their weight. Review courtesy of Penguin Press, publisher
Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? By Frans de Waal
Author Frans de Waal, a world-renowned biologist and primatologist, explores both the scope and the depth of animal intelligence, in this groundbreaking new work. He offers a firsthand account of how science is now standing traditional behaviorism on its head, by revealing just how smart animals really are, and how we’ve underestimated their abilities for too long. De Waal gives us insights into the minds and behaviors of animals through example after example of their creativity, adaptability, loyalty and intelligence, beyond anything we may have ever imagined. Review courtesy of W.W. Norton & Company, publisher.