Articles and extracts

Eugene Marais

This is a collection of material from various sources related to the South African scientist and poet, Eugen Marais.

Dorris Lessing wrote of Eugene Marais:

“He offers a vision of nature as a whole, whose parts obey different time-laws, move in affinities and linkages we could learn to see: parts making wholes on their own level, but seen by our divisive brains as a multitude of individualities, a flock of birds, a species of plant or beast. We are just at the start of an understanding of the heavens as a web of interlocking clocks, all differently set: an understanding that is not intellectual, but woven into experience. Marais brings this thought down into the plain, the hedgerow, the garden.”

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Book

The Soul of the Ape & My Friends the Baboons

EUGENE MARAIS


Paperback, Kindle.

Includes the two works by Eugene Marais written after his period spent living among a troop of baboons in the South African veldt.

Firstly, there was a series of articles written in Afrikaans for the newspaper Die Vaderland. They were then published in book form under the title Burgers van die Berge, and were first published in an English translation in 1939 under the title My Friends the Baboons. These pieces were written in a popular vein suitable to a newspaper readership, and were not regarded seriously by Marais himself. They are a journal; a series of anecdotes and impressions.

The Soul of the Ape, which Marais wrote in beautifully clear and precise English, was the more serious scientific document; however after his death in 1936, it could not be found. It was lost for 32 years, and was recovered in 1968, and published the following year.

The excellent introduction by Robert Ardrey that is included in this volume was part of the 1969 and subsequent editions of The Soul of the Ape, and adds greatly to an appreciation of its importance.

“One of the great masterpieces of scientific literature. I would even say it is a master piece of literature alone. I hope this man is remembered by the future and not forgotten further.” – reader review

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Articles and extracts

On Eugene Marais

Robert Ardrey


Article

Early in the 20th century Eugène Marais, South African journalist, lawyer, poet and natural scientist, travelled to the wild Northern Transvaal and lived for three years at close quarters with a troop of chacma baboons.The Soul of the Ape is the record of his experiences and observations. Lost for forty years, the manuscript was rediscovered by Robert Ardrey, who dedicated his African Genesis to Marais. Ardrey believed that Marais’ work “presents better than any other book published thus far the dawning of humanity in the psyche of the higher primate.”

The following is Ardrey’s introduction to the original version of The Soul of the Ape. He was an American playwright, screenwriter and science writer perhaps best known for The Territorial Imperative (1966). After a Broadway and Hollywood career, he returned to his academic training in anthropology and the behavioral sciences.

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Articles and extracts

Link: The Origin of a Revolutionary Theory

Helian.net


Link

Eugene Marais was a human community in the person of one man. He was a poet, an advocate, a journalist, a story-teller, a drug addict, a psychologist, a natural scientist. He embraced the pains of many, the visions of the few, and perhaps the burden was too much for one man… As a scientist he was unique, supreme in his time, yet a worker in a science then unborn. – R. Ardrey, The Soul of the Ape (Introduction)

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Book

The Soul of the White Ant

EUGENE MARAIS


Paperback, Kindle, Epub, Audiobook

The amazing results of a long, close study of the lives of termites.

“As a safari Guide in the Okavango Botswana for many years, I used this book as a basis for presenting a fascination for the smaller creatures of the African bush, my home for my entire life and which I was privileged to share with many clients from different countries. Termite mounds are really interesting and Eugene Marais compared the infrastructure of a termitary to that of the human body. Writing from the heart, this scientific author instills a wonder in the reader, of the incredible intricacies of nature, in a light-hearted, easily readable manner.”

“An excellent read – astonishing for its time. A heartfelt and truly holistic/metaphysical observation of how the colony functions which is deeply thought provoking…”

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