Shop now Learn more Shop now Shop Clothing clo_fly_aw15_NA_shoes Shop All Shop All Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop Fire HD 6 Shop Kindle Paperwhite Shop now Shop Now Shop now
The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis: Most Credible Theory of Human Evolution Hardcover – 17 Jul 1997

21 customer reviews

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
£999.11 £50.00
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • Save £20 on Amazon.co.uk with the aqua Classic card. Get an initial credit line of £250-£1,200 and build your credit rating. Representative 32.9% APR (variable). Subject to term and conditions. Learn more.



Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Souvenir Press Ltd (17 July 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0285633775
  • ISBN-13: 978-0285633773
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14.2 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,426,178 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Elaine Morgan was born in 1920 and after studying at Oxford University worked as a television writer. In 1972 she published The Descent of Woman suggesting that human evolution had an aquatic origin. This idea was attacked at first by scientists but the book became an international bestseller. In the decades since Morgan's aquatic ape hypothesis has gained widespread support.

Product Description

Review

"Controversial but highly attractive claims about human evolution
and our human love of water and the sea." -- Margaret Drabble

"It was one of the most outrageous, improbable evolutionary ideas
ever proposed... now the idea... is becoming respectable."
-- 'The Observer'

"More scientific than Genesis, more up to date than Darwin, more
fun than Ardrey... she writes better than Desmond Morris." -- 'Sunday Telegraph'

"Part feminist polemic, part evolutionary bombshell." -- 'The Guardian'

"She is more scientific than Genesis, more up to date than
Darwin... and she writes better than Desmond Morris."
-- 'Sunday Telegraph' --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Peter Durward Harris #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on 15 May 2009
Format: Paperback
People who don't believe in Darwin's theory of evolution have a simple answer to all questions about why humans are markedly different from all other animals - God created everything. To people who believe in Darwin's theory and are interested, the questions pertaining to human evolution are intriguing and controversial. The aquatic ape hypothesis is very controversial within the scientific community but, as the author explains, it deserves serious consideration.

Most of us who believe in Darwin accept that there was once a species of ape living in Africa from which all people are descended as well as all modern apes such as gorillas and chimpanzees. Looking at the modern apes, we can observe some similarities with ourselves but there are also many obvious differences. Those apes are much hairier than us and often spend their time in trees. When they walk on the ground, they generally do so on four legs rather than two. Apes use body language far more than we do, yet our faces are much more expressive than theirs. Our noses are also very different from theirs. There are less obvious but equally important differences such as the location of the larynx. Of course, there are noticeable differences between different species of apes, but they have more in common with each other than any of them do with us.

The author suggests that there may have been a time when our ancestors were forced to adapt to a semi-aquatic lifestyle. On that basis, the likeliest scenario is that we are descended from a group of apes then living in Africa near the Red Sea, maybe around six or seven million years ago. The author doesn't mention the Sahara desert but I know from other sources that it is of more recent origin, maybe three or four million years old, so the region was very different before that.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Dewi Morgan on 4 Mar. 2000
Format: Paperback
Elaine wrote this book to update the theory with the latest findings, and to answer many of the criticisms levelled at the hypothesis.
I, personally, think she did a good job. It's her most professionally laid out work to date. It's the best book on the topic that I know of. But then, I would say that - I'm her grandson :-)
I was reading her books back when I was eight and younger, and finding them fascinating reading even then. If you don't buy, then I can recommend them as good books to get from a library, too. At the very least, they'll make you think.
What's it about? The hypothesis that the differences in human bodies from those of the apes can be explained by our spending some time in the water after the split from the apes. This may even have caused the split.
Why is it better than her other books (The Descent of Woman, The Aquatic Ape, Scars of Evolution, The Descent of the Child)? It is more up-to-date and well-referenced.
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
35 of 38 people found the following review helpful By vidyakaya on 24 Feb. 2001
Format: Paperback
Elaine Morgan presents in a highly readable form, a convincing collection of evidence showing that human beings went through a semi-aquatic phase in the course of our evolution and that this is what made us so different to other primates. For some reason I am unable to understand, the scientific establishment still rejects this hypothesis. The original idea, which I first heard about in 1972 at university, when studying biology, was that of Alistair Hardy, but he never attempted to publicise it, possibly for fear of damaging his reputation. Ms Morgan clearly has no such fears not being a professional scientist, and I trust her all the more for that. The evidence she presents - such as our relative hairlessness, our subcutaneous fat distribution and our 'diving reflex' - are simple observable facts for which no other explanation has yet been offered. I should be delighted to enter into correspondence with anyone who can explain to me what is so 'unscientific' about the aquatic ape hypothesis, or indeed with the author or any of her fans. I believe that this theory provides a poetic key to increasing our sense of connection to this poor battered planet, especially with the oceans which we treat so carelessly still. READ THIS BOOK!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 20 Jan. 1999
Format: Hardcover
Elaine Morgan has written the definitive presentation of a revolutionary theory of human evolution which accounts for dozens of human oddities that most theories barely mention or refuse to touch, e.g. naked skin, love of water, bipedality, subcutaneous fat, chubby babies, apocrine vs eccrine glands. Methodically, Morgan supports the theory with evidence from many scientific disciplines. Once ridiculed, the odd-sounding "aquatic ape theory" has increasingly gained acceptance among comparative biologists, geneticists, zoologists, physiologists, and brain specialists. A Discovery Channel special (Spring 99) entitled "The Aquatic Ape" is sure to increase interest in the fascinating proposal that humanity's direct ancestors were once far more aquatic than humans are now. The last holdouts seem to be paleoanthropologists themselves, who can't be happy that "outsider" Morgan trumped them in their own field.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 29 May 2000
Format: Paperback
Elaine Morgan presents her arguements on the aquatic ape hypothesis (AAH), viz the idea that human anscestors went through a semiaquatic phase during their evolution, and that this explains many features that are unique to humans amongst primates.

A very easy to read book, which presents a copious quanity of evidence and arguements to support her case. It seems to me, having read this book, that the AAH gives a more coherent explanation of human physiological features than the alternative theories. The author does however spoil her case somewhat by trying to fit every single detail of the human anatomy into the straightjacket of her theory e.g. are we really expected to believe that humans can curl their upper lip (uniquely amongst primates) as this allows us to cover our nostrils when swimming?
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews



Feedback