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Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:20 PM

Jane Goodall’s Troubling, Error-Filled New Book, ‘Seeds of Hope’

Last week famed primatologist Jane Goodall was found to have plagiarized parts of her new book, but a deeper look reveals a work plagued by rampant copying, obvious errors, and ominous junk science.
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/03/26/jane-goodall-s-troubling-error-filled-new-book-seeds-of-hope.html

"No one wants to criticize Jane Goodall—Dame Goodall—the soft-spoken, white-haired doyenne of primatology. She cares deeply about animals and the health of the planet. How could one object to that? Her list of awards and honorary degrees are too numerous to mention. She was tasked by Kofi Annan to be a United Nations Messenger of Peace, an appropriately meaningless, but distinguished, gong. In 2010, a Guardian writer noted that Goodall’s book Hope for Animals and Their World had a “written-by-committee feel of which must of course be forgiven because of its subject matter.” He felt “doubly guilty for criticising the book” when she generously inscribed his copy.

You see, everyone is willing to forgive Jane Goodall. When it was revealed last week in The Washington Post that Goodall’s latest book, Seeds of Hope, a fluffy treatise on plant life, contained passages that were “borrowed” from other authors, the reaction was surprisingly muted. The writer who discovered the plagiarism—an unnamed academic reviewing the book for the Post—alerted the newspaper and backed out of the assignment. When the Post and the New York Times reported his findings, both avoided saying that Goodall had plagiarized—which, even by the strictest definition of the word, she did—instead writing that she “borrowed” passages, fully intending, apparently, to return them upon publication.

The entire controversy has been clouded in euphemism. The Post presented a half-dozen examples of plagiarism (which can be viewed here) but downplayed their significance. “Appropriating another author’s ideas as one’s own and inventing material and presenting it as fact are among the gravest literary lapses,” wrote Steven Levingston, the newspaper’s nonfiction editor. “Neither appears to have occurred in Seeds of Hope.” The Christian Science Monitor stated that “in Goodall’s case, there is no suggestion that her intent was to pass off the ideas of others as her own.” Writer Marjorie Ingall argued that Goodall (or the book’s co-author, Gail Hudson) “didn’t commit the most hellacious sin associated with plagiarism—she didn’t pass off other people’s ideas as her own.”

This is both a bizarre redefining of plagiarism and a semantic sleight of hand: Goodall quite clearly passed off the words of others as her own (and presented interview quotes said to other journalists as having been said to her). But embedded in those words is both the original author’s accumulated knowledge and, in context and arrangement, ideas. Regardless, Goodall’s offense is one that would precipitate firing from all of those publications that are rushing to provide an elastic definition of her faults.

..."




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Jane Goodall's work has been amazing, and an inspiration for all.

That does not make her perfect, and it does not mean that anyone should buy her proclamations, just because. Alas, like many famous scientists, she has pushed less-than-scientific claims in her later years.

I have talked with her, and I have seen her speak many times. I will never forget what I learned from her, but I will not turn the other way when she is not acting in a scientific manner.

Take care, Jane, and everyone.

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Arrow 42 replies Author Time Post
Reply Jane Goodall’s Troubling, Error-Filled New Book, ‘Seeds of Hope’ (Original post)
HuckleB Mar 2015 OP
HuckleB Mar 2015 #1
uppityperson Mar 2015 #17
Jefferson23 Mar 2015 #2
HuckleB Mar 2015 #3
Jefferson23 Mar 2015 #4
HuckleB Mar 2015 #5
Jefferson23 Mar 2015 #6
HuckleB Mar 2015 #7
Jefferson23 Mar 2015 #8
brentspeak Mar 2015 #15
laundry_queen Mar 2015 #18
HuckleB Mar 2015 #31
laundry_queen Mar 2015 #33
HuckleB Mar 2015 #37
HuckleB Mar 2015 #41
closeupready Mar 2015 #26
HuckleB Mar 2015 #30
Jefferson23 Mar 2015 #34
REP Mar 2015 #9
HuckleB Mar 2015 #10
REP Mar 2015 #13
HuckleB Mar 2015 #20
AngryAmish Mar 2015 #11
HuckleB Mar 2015 #12
Archae Mar 2015 #14
HuckleB Mar 2015 #42
uppityperson Mar 2015 #16
HuckleB Mar 2015 #19
uppityperson Mar 2015 #21
HuckleB Mar 2015 #22
uppityperson Mar 2015 #23
HuckleB Mar 2015 #24
uppityperson Mar 2015 #25
HuckleB Mar 2015 #27
uppityperson Mar 2015 #28
HuckleB Mar 2015 #29
immoderate Mar 2015 #32
laundry_queen Mar 2015 #35
immoderate Mar 2015 #36
uppityperson Mar 2015 #38
immoderate Mar 2015 #39
HuckleB Mar 2015 #40

Response to HuckleB (Original post)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:22 PM

1. The Jane Goodall Book Scandal: Most Journalists Hold Back but One Doesn’t Shy Away from Criticizing

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #1)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 12:43 AM

17. And another 2 yr old article. I am wondering what happened when they pulled the books, if

they redid them enough, gave credit enough? This new article indicates they did. This does not excuse publishing without credit, but does show they tried to fix what was done wrong.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/style-blog/wp/2014/04/02/jane-goodalls-seeds-of-hope-reissued-a-year-after-being-pulled-from-shelves-2/
Grand Central Publishing, an imprint of Hachette Book Group, decided to publish the new version after evidence emerged last year that numerous passages in the book had been used from other published sources without attribution.

“Dr. Goodall carefully reviewed her book, made corrections and added 57 pages of endnotes,” Matthew Ballast, executive director of publicity for Grand Central, said in an e-mail.

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Response to HuckleB (Original post)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:29 PM

2. If accurate, that is inexcusable. n/t

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:30 PM

3. Maybe. Unfortunately, it's not unusual for scientists late in life.

See Linus Pauling, as an example.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #3)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:36 PM

4. That is sad and quite frankly, dangerous. n/t

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #4)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:37 PM

5. All too true, though it does make the biographies more interesting!

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #5)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 06:43 PM

6. Their legacy, well at least in the gentleman's case, does demonstrate how anyone can

fall despite their obvious genius...very sad. With Ms Goodall, I guess time will tell how she'll address it.



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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #6)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 07:48 PM

7. We can hope that she'll go with science, as Bill Nye has done.

Hope is good.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #7)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 08:17 PM

8. Yes, no doubt about that and thanks for the OP. n/t

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #2)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 12:26 AM

15. You two have cubicles next to each other?

Or do you coordinate astro-turf from different locations?

Or maybe it's the same cubicle?

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Response to brentspeak (Reply #15)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 12:45 AM

18. hahaha, my thoughts too, exactly. nt

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Response to laundry_queen (Reply #18)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 02:26 AM

31. You would have to stop promoting scams, first.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #31)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 08:57 AM

33. What scam am I promoting?

I'd like to know. I hate scams.

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Response to laundry_queen (Reply #33)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:51 PM

37. Anti-GMO propaganda.

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Response to laundry_queen (Reply #33)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 05:45 PM

41. AAAS Scientists: Consensus on GMO Safety Firmer Than For Human-Induced Climate Change

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Response to brentspeak (Reply #15)


Response to brentspeak (Reply #15)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 02:25 AM

30. Are you incapable of thought?

Or is the shill gambit your only response to reality?

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Response to brentspeak (Reply #15)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 08:58 AM

34. No. You found two people who don't appreciate plagiarism. I suspect you already

knew that before you posted your snark based question.

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Response to HuckleB (Original post)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 08:41 PM

9. Just read the Daily Beast and MIT pieces ...

It's much worse than the excerpt posted suggests. Which is a shame, but it seems fairly common for people of a certain generation to understand global climate instantly but believe any vague bullshit about GMOs.

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Response to REP (Reply #9)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 10:22 PM

10. I don't know about generations, but...

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #10)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 11:23 PM

13. That seems to jibe with my untested, wildass theory

Without making too much of an ass of myself, those born in the 30s are more likely to have memories of what the climate used to be like, what is was like without vaccines and have some degree of farm experience - Victory Gardens, family farms, summer work or hearing about the family farm. So global climate change and vaccines: yup. GMOs may get lumped into the Roundup Ready shenanigans, which is harmful to farmers but not in the "GMOs will make my babies be born nekkid" way.

Just a thought.

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Response to REP (Reply #13)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:21 AM

20. You do know that you can test those theories against actual evidence, right?

Please do so, and then get back to us! It could be interesting.

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Response to HuckleB (Original post)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 10:58 PM

11. She lost her fastball. maybe this book should be put aside.

 

One is reminded of Don Sterling, who went senile, said racist shit, then made 2 billion dollars.

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Response to AngryAmish (Reply #11)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 11:02 PM

12. Indeed. Unfortunately, she's still pushing anti-science, anti-GMO silliness.

And it's being bought, hook, line, and sinker at DU.

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Response to HuckleB (Original post)

Thu Mar 5, 2015, 11:44 PM

14. Based on this, and her unabashed promotion of a woo book...

I've lost all respect for Jane Goodall.

Jeffrey Smith is a notorious anti-GMO hysteric, and his credentials?

"Smith, whose actual education consist of business studies at the rather spectacularly unaccredited Maharishi International University, founded by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and who has enjoyed a career advocating yogic flying, has even written two books on GMO foods, Seeds of Deception and Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods, which does not appear to be too careful about documentation (to put it diplomatically). He also runs a “think tank”, The Institute for Responsible Technology."

(snip)

Yet Jane Goodall has nothing but praise for this hysteric's bullshit.

"The problem is that people with real authority have actually taken Smith’s claims seriously. Famed British primatologist Jane Goodall, who has left any aspirations of respectability on these matters behind a while ago yet continues to enjoy some respect in certain circles, generously blurbed Smith’s book (“If you care about your health and that of your children, buy this book, become aware of the potential problems, and take action”) and cited Smith’s “research” extensively in her own Seeds of Hope (she also recommended a book on GM by Maharishi Institute executive vice president Steven M. Druker, who – surprisingly enough –has no scientific training either)."

http://americanloons.blogspot.com/2014/09/1157-jeffery-smith.html

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Response to Archae (Reply #14)

Sat Mar 7, 2015, 02:24 PM

42. It's bizarre. One has to wonder how this happens.

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Response to HuckleB (Original post)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 12:41 AM

16. Link is nearly 2 years old, why post it now? Here's a newer article, seems to imply they pulled the

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #16)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:19 AM

19. Are you saying that she has changed her stance?

If so, please share the link that shows this.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #19)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:24 AM

21. I did post a recent link about her book. Or do you mean the anti-GMO stance? I think that's current

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10026318659#post16
Here's a newer article, seems to imply they pulled the books, redid it.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/style-blog/wp/2014/04/02/jane-goodalls-seeds-of-hope-reissued-a-year-after-being-pulled-from-shelves-2/

I am wondering why you posted a 2 yr old articl, is it because of the current anti-GMO stuff she has said?

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #21)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:26 AM

22. So, no, she hasn't change her stance.

And other DUers pushing her stance is not something you have chosen to address. Why is that?

Please don't play games. I'm much too old for this nonsense.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #22)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:30 AM

23. I was just asking why you posted a 2 yr old story about her, and added in a newer one on her book.

I was wondering if you posted it because of her anti-gmo stuff. I haven't read "other DUers pushing her stance" and haven't addressed that because my question here is why post a 2 yr old article about her book, the book which it appears was pulled and highly edited.

Not playing any game, just trying to figure out the motivation for posting an old story about her. And it saddens me very much because I held her in great respect. I hadn't read this 2 years ago when it happened, thanks for bringing it to my attention.

So, wondering why post an old story about her book?

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #23)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:33 AM

24. Why does a post on her old position, which she is repeating, get so many likes at DU?

You know why, so end of discussion.

Science matters. THAT'S WHY!

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #24)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:41 AM

25. I have come around on the GMO issue over the last couple years. It appalled me, then I read more and

learned more and while still in some ways appalling, it is also amazing. There is so much potential there and as far as I can tell no harm to people but many good things (gold rice, if I recall the term correctly, for one).

At first the thought of sticking fish genes into plants was awful, too many bad science fiction movies as a child. Corn that breaths under water?

Also I trust Monsanto extremely little. And wonder what effects this will have on the larger environment, of whom humans "should" be good stewards. Then there is the open pollinated seeds, saving seeds for replanting vs buying commercial ones every year (I lived near and knew many who worked with one of the big open pollinated seed places in the 80's) (and save seeds myself from my home garden which is not commercial).

But.

There needs to be oversight but reading the science, I see no harm to humans. I see no need to label, indeed the idea of labeling serves a couple groups mightily as they would make gobs of money off it.

Those groups? Organic food companies and food coops/health food stores. They stand to profit off labeling in a huge way.

ETA, I just tried looking through the other Jane Goodall post which I think you mean and tire of the sniping back and forth so figured I'd answer you in depth more here.

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #25)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:44 AM

27. I don't know anyone who trusts any corporations.

Monsanto can FO, as far as I'm concerned, and yet I don't get the whole "March On Monsanto" routine.

Something doesn't match up with the science of the matter...

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #27)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:48 AM

28. And after taking a look at that other thread, I understand this one better.

I hadn't looked at it, thought this was just a slam on Ms Goodall from something that seems to have been fixed. Now I understand.

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #28)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:50 AM

29. I really wish she had not gone down this road.

It sucks.

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #25)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 04:26 AM

32. Why is it OK for Monsanto to profit from GMOs, but not organic food stores for labeling?

 

You see no harm to humans. Apparently the extremely little trust you have for Monsanto serves them well.

--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #32)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 09:15 AM

35. I'd like labeling

so I can specifically avoid supporting all the large corporations with nasty practices against farmers. Oh, but science is the be all and end all of this argument? No. Just no. There's a lot more to it.

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Response to laundry_queen (Reply #35)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 01:21 PM

36. I agree. The ecological and economic factors are also considerable.

 

It seems that GMOs bring out the corporate tendencies of DUers.

--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #32)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 02:33 PM

38. Why is it ok to try and put words into my mouth? hmmm

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #38)

Fri Mar 6, 2015, 02:49 PM

39. It would be wrong for me to do that.

 



--imm

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