In the Shadow of ManJane Goodall
I first read this book in the eighth grade, and Jane Goodall's vivid depictions of the hardships and rewards of studying chimpanzees in Africa gripped my curiosity and fueled my imagination. Before her work humans were often defined as the animal that made tools; Jane's research shattered that misconception. This books also brings chimpanzees to life as individuals, humanizing them (or chimpanzizing us?). I have used this book in class for years, and students rarely fail to be moved by it – often to tears. It is possible I might not be an academic had I never read this book.