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Morris, Desmond

Entry updated 31 July 2023. Tagged: Author.

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(1928-    ) UK painter, zoologist and author who remains best known for popularizations of sociobiology, arguing in The Naked Ape: A Zoologist's Study of the Human Animal (1967) that human behaviour could be usefully studied (though not comprehensively defined) through ethological comparisons with our primate relatives. He is of some sf interest for his only novel, Inrock (1983; exp 2013), whose young protagonist enters a surreal Underground world, accessible through rock outcrops undergoing strange metamorphoses, in an attempt to pin down the truth about things. Inside, he finds strange creatures.

Morris is credited with devising "authentic" prehistoric human body language and sexual positions for the film Quest for Fire (1981). [JC]

see also: Metaphysics; Philip Oakes.

Desmond Morris

born Purton, Wiltshire: 24 January 1928

works (highly selected)

  • Inrock (London: Jonathan Cape, 1983) [hb/]
    • Inrock (no place given: Dark Windows Press, 2013) [exp of the above: illus/Desmond Morris: hb/nonpictorial]



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