Science & Tech, Community & Government, Home & Lifestyle


Dr. Jane Goodall

Lesson time 9:53 min

Dr. Jane is one of the best storytellers in the world. Learn her techniques for communicating effectively with anyone—even if that person doesn’t share your point of view.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Tell Stories to Reach Their Hearts • Reaching Their Hearts: Climate Change Skeptics


I don't know how many years I have left on this planet, but I do know that the message I have is a very, very important message. I was given two gifts in my life, and I was taught as a child that if you have gifts you should use them. One gift-- I've got a pretty good constitution. Nearly 83, still traveling 300 days a year, doing long interviews where you sit in a chair for hour after hour, talking to large groups of people, overusing my voice, getting exhausted. But I'm doing it because I think it's important. The other gift I have is communication. I was born with it. I think I inherited my constitution from my father. He was very active right up to the end and tough and all the rest of it. But the other side, I think comes from my mother, who's got Welsh blood in her. And the Welsh, they're very musical and they do singing, and acting, and stuff like that. And I knew I had this gift of communication, but in writing I did. I didn't know I had it in speaking, and it was given to me. So have I worked to develop it? Yes. Whether it's writing or speaking, I've worked very hard, but the gift was there. It was there to start with, and I have to use it. This is why I go around as I go around. Does what I do make a difference? I wouldn't be so egoistical to say it makes a difference, but for the fact that hundreds and hundreds of people tell me or write to me, and tell me that after they came to one of my talks it changed their life. After they read Reason For Hope, it gave them reason to hope in their own lives and made a change, so I have to use these gifts. I think one of the problems of successful advocacy is people become too militant, people become too adversarial, and although that maybe can play a role at some point, I don't think it's the ultimate solution. So if I take, for example, some animal rights movements right at the beginning, then, I think some level of militant aggression is necessary to kind of wake people up. But after people have become woken up, and they've become aware, then, I think a different approach works better. And the approach that I've always taken-- because I'm not adversarial by nature, it's just not me. And my approach has always been to try and reach into people's hearts, and the only way I can do that is by telling stories. For example, I've been around Capitol Hill quite a lot talking to various senators and congressmen. And usually, it's a very rushed thing and you get maybe 10 minutes max. And I know from talking to various lobbyists that people go in and they plunge straight into their thing, and they've got it all lined up and-- but I can't do that. I have to make-- even if it's only one minute-- make some kind of relationship. Who is it I'm talking to? I hear you have a dog, or something I've learned about them, and I introduce that. So there's a relaxing. I want somebody who's...

About the Instructor

There is still a window of time. Nature can win if we give her a chance. In her first ever online class, Dr. Jane Goodall teaches how you can conserve the environment. She also shares her research on the behavioral patterns of chimpanzees and what they taught her about conservation. You'll learn how to act locally and protect the planet.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Dr. Jane Goodall

Dr. Jane Goodall shares her insights into animal intelligence, conservation, and activism.

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