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Dian Fossey

As a Guest

4 segments

Two Women Researchers on Communicating with Primates

We play clips from interviews with two animal scientists. First Dian Fossey, recorded in 1982. She talks about learning how to talk to gorillas. Next, Jane Goodall reflects on over 30 years in the company of one community of chimpanzees in the wilds of Tanzania.


The "Woman in the Mists."

Canadian writer and naturalist Farley Mowat. Mowat has written widely on nature and wildlife and championed the cause of harp seals, whales, wolves, Eskimos. His books include A Whale for the Killing, The Boat Who Wouldn't Float and Never Cry Wolf. His latest book, Woman in the Mists, is the story of Dian Fossey, the American woman who studied and lived with the mountain gorillas of Rwanda, Africa. Fossey was murdered at her remote base camp in 1985. (This is the first part of a two-part interview with Mowat.) (Contains portion of Dian Fossey interview; May 12, 1982).


Observing "Gorillas in the Mist"

Researcher Dian Fossey returns to Fresh Air to share more of her findings about gorillas' social and sexual behavior, and her experience confronting poachers, all of which she details in a new book.

As a Topic

6 segments

A Westerner on Africa's Political "Madness"

New Yorker staff writer Alex Shoumatoff has a new book of essays called African Madness, about his travels throughout the continent. He joins Fresh Air to talk about the brutal reign of Emperor Bokassa in the Central African Republic, Dian Fossey's blind spots regarding the human populations near gorilla habitats, and the spread of AIDS.


The New Reality of Travel Writing

Book critic John Leonard reviews African Madness, a new collection of travel essays by Alex Shumatoff, a New Yorker staff writer who seeks to capture the changing face of sub-Saharan African.


Another Look at "Gorillas in the Mist"

Critic-at-large Laurie Stone recently saw the Dian Fossey biopic. She praises the film's power and compassion, fueled in large part by star Sigourney Weaver's outstanding performance.

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