The Parrot in the Mirror: How Evolving to Be Like Birds Makes Us Human


Product Details

Oxford University Press, USA
Publish Date
5.78 X 8.7 X 0.93 inches | 0.81 pounds

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About the Author

Antone Martinho-Truswell, Dean, Graduate House, St Paul's College, University of Sydney Antone Martinho-Truswell is a behavioural ecologist whose work focuses on animal minds and learning, especially in birds and cephalopods, intelligent species whose evolutionary history differs dramatically from that of mammals. He has been published in Science, Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Current Biology, and elsewhere, and has been covered in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Times, and The New Scientist, as well as on BBC Radio and TalkRadio. He has also written on longstanding questions in biology, animal behaviour, and human society for Aeon and the BBC. Martinho-Truswell is currently Dean of Graduate House at St Paul's College, Sydney, and was previously Fellow in Biology at Magdalen College, Oxford.


"One can see why this book was written -- convergent evolution. Illustrations of the ways in which similar challenges lead to similar solutions. And, at this level, I must say it is a pretty entertaining read." -- Michael Ruse, The Quarterly Review of Biology

"Martinho-Truswell reports lots of interesting animal behavior here. Readers will learn a lot about the capabilities of the bird brain and body as well as their own." -- Joanna Burger, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick

"A must read for anyone with an interest in bird/human behavior." -- Ian Paulsen, Macquarie University, The Birdbooker Report

"entertaining" -- Clive Cookson, Financial Times, Summer Books 2022: Science

"Engagingly and entertainingly written, this book places some of the many recent discoveries about bird intelligence into a fascinating human-bird framework." -- Tim Birkhead

"This is a short book written in a refreshingly readable style.[...]The Parrot in the Mirror is clever, fun, and [...] reminds us that wonder exists far beyond our own species." -- Henry Mance, Financial Times

"It's a fascinating, indeed almost surreal topic, and the book is full of facts and observations about how birds, and we, have evolved in similarly exceptional ways." -- Gregory Day, Sydney Morning Herald

"Having read [The Parrot in the Mirror], you won't look at yourself in the mirror in quite the same way." -- Simon Ings, New Scientist