By Mendoza, Naomi B.
This documentary about monkeys on BBC was really informative. It’s amazing how monkeys build their societies and form their own politics. It’s also interesting that they have a system on the distribution of power and how they play their roles in their community. The slogan “Knowledge is power” applies for these animals since they measure their knowledge or experience and appoint a specific leader. “The bigger the brain”, the higher the rank in their community. The alpha male or the leader of the pack usually has the most benefits. When they hunt, the alpha male most of the time gets to eat first and the younger monkeys, or those who are in the lower ranks, feast on the leftovers. Grooming is another act of social bonding for these animals. Through grooming, they strengthen the bonds of their pack because the alpha males, or leaders, join in with the females and other groups of families to groom each other. When it comes to socializing with other breeds of monkeys, some form groups of allies and enemies. Some cover each other when a predator comes in sight for the benefit of both groups.
Like humans, monkeys show a lot of distinct characteristics that are the same as ours. They have social ranks which determine their roles and responsibilities in the community, they socialize with other groups of monkeys, and they help each other survive in the wild. But there is one thing in common about all other animals have that will always be the same with us, food. All will be striving for food to be able to survive. We will build communities, socialize with other races, create a government, etc. and we will always end up striving for something to eat. Maybe that’s the reason why they entitled this documentary “The Social Climbers”. They showed monkeys as an example on how they climb their way up the social ladder. The monkeys would be an excellent symbol to show a simplified version of our complex lifestyle. They showed how monkeys, or our “ancestors”, as they call it, interact with other monkeys and expand communities; how it all started, from hunting, gathering, to cooking, building, constructing cities, and how we all live now in the present.