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Do we think too little of Personification?





Parkour_Jarrod
So, personification to my understanding is when, in literature, you use an animal or an object and give it a set of "human" traits behind itself.

Now, in your opinion, do we think to little of animals that they don't have "human" traits?

Watch this video and tell me that animals don't have the same traits as us... All the facial emotions of grief can be accounted for.

Arseniy
Umph, animal psychosomatics need to be explored by specialists. Or it have been already?
By the way, it could be the effect of the herd instinct. The member of the herd always tries to hold on with other members of the same herd and to protect them in order to be protected himself.
ocalhoun
Parkour_Jarrod wrote:

Now, in your opinion, do we think to little of animals that they don't have "human" traits?

Why yes, many animals do have traits that are often falsely attributed to humans only.

Why anyone would insist on a sharp delineation between 'people' and animals is quite beyond my understanding.
(Could anybody clarify that for me?)

/By the way, nice to see a good 'zombie' thread dug up, and by posting a meaningful comment no less!
Flakky
Oh God, this is not what I expected when I read the topic title. You sir are horrible Razz
standready
I think all creatures grieve not just us humans. I am sure most of us have seen elephants return to the bones of a fallen member of the herd. You can see the sadness just like that cat.
LittleBlackKitten
I believe quite thorougly that animals possess many if not all of human emotion; they simply do not display it very often, because they have learned to fear them around people as we really are a barbaric race. I also believe, like some humans, animals are gifted with psychic ability, and the ability to communicate telepathically to those sensitive to it, but we're not talking about that here, Laughing.

I honestly think that our pets chose us, instead of the other way around, when we obtain the perfect partnership. That perfect cat/dog/bird/whatever; they KNOW they're destined for us and I honestly think they're far moer anthromorphic than we give them credit.

My Clownfish know when I'm upset. They will crowd me at the glass when I'm uspet, and usually stay away from me otherwise...They've even kissed my hand when I'm upset and generally they're terrified of it. It's not too far to assume that they know exactly how I'm feeling because they feel it themselves and can be intuative about it. In fact, they've even cuddled my lawnmower blenny and have BROUGHT him algae he couldn't reach. Well, got it and spat it in his face, but I think that's the same thing, Laughing.

When I went to the fish store to buy a totally other breed of clownfish, they pestered me at the glass and wouldn't leave me alone - they even went IN to the NET as the guy was trying to catch the other two. I couldn't just leave them there if they wanted to come home with me. They wanted me. Very Happy
Blaster
Come to think of it about 5 years ago or so I saw a squirel that feel out of a tree. The squirel was dead however another squirel seemed to be in mourning. So after thinking about that i guess i can see animals having feelings. Even thought it seems a bit crazy
ocalhoun
Blaster wrote:
So after thinking about that i guess i can see animals having feelings. Even thought it seems a bit crazy


You should see what I've seen once... There was a stable full of horses who got along well with each other, and were usually happy and active. But one day, one got sick and had to be put down. While the vet was on the way, many of them crowded around the sick one's stall. And afterwards, they all moped around acting sad and subdued for a couple days, even though the owners were careful to make sure none of the other horses could see what was going on.

-They knew and understood what happened, and they definitely grieved for their friend.



This may be particular to social animals though; I've never heard of such things in solitary animals before. It may be that it serves some sort of evolutionary purpose for social animals, though what that might be, I can't fathom.
deanhills
ocalhoun wrote:
This may be particular to social animals though; I've never heard of such things in solitary animals before. It may be that it serves some sort of evolutionary purpose for social animals, though what that might be, I can't fathom.
I definitely agree. My experience is with dogs. We always have had more than one dog at a time, and they have always been close. If any of them have passed, there has always been a visible effect on the others. I don't know whether they could have picked it up from us as well. Nothing worse than an animal that you are close to, passing on.
Blaster
Dean when my dog passed away my other dog seemed to mop around as well. It is quite, I guess you can say, entertaining. Not because of them being sad but because its interesting at the same time.

Ocal that was a great story and quite sad at the same time
timothymartin
So are you suggesting animalification? I think that is obviously being done already. Just watch reality tv. Humans act with animal traits all the time.
Parkour_Jarrod
timothymartin wrote:
So are you suggesting animalification? I think that is obviously being done already. Just watch reality tv. Humans act with animal traits all the time.


No humans act like morons all the time... Reality TV is a sham used on the mindless.

What I am talking about, and what has been discussed is that people use personification in stories and poems and teach children that it is fictional but in reality it is there, always has been and is very powerful. The video and various stories show that animals have these emotions that have been taught to be "human only" and it was my question to the frihost society do we think too little of personification. As in, do we think personification is only fiction, when it reality it is there?
deanhills
Parkour_Jarrod wrote:
do we think too little of personification. As in, do we think personification is only fiction, when it reality it is there?
I think there is nothing more fascinating than being able to recognize that reality. I'm not sure whether it is always real, but this feeling of connecting with animals through personification usually gives a warm fuzzy feeling? Especially when they are playful as well, and we recognize intelligence in some of their manouvres. I recall a Maltese puppy we had once, who very meticulously knew how to sidestep water puddles. Not only was she cute, but dahm shrewd as well. So this is probably a good example of personification that is semi-real. Attributing human traits to a little puppy dog of intelligence, being cute and being shrewd.
Greatking
yes animals do have human traits because in the bible God came to Adam and asked him to name the animals, so therefore i am sure he put some of his traits in him, but them of course we are totally different from animals. that is a fact, no one can prove otherwise.
Bikerman
That depends what you mean by 'totally different'. We share many characteristics with other apes - particularly chimps. Our genetic code is extremely similar (to the extent that it may even be possible for humans and chimps to produce offspring) and we observe many of the same kinds of behaviours in both chimps and humans.
ocalhoun
Bikerman wrote:
(to the extent that it may even be possible for humans and chimps to produce offspring)


O.o
Now that would be odd...

Might go a long way towards changing people's attitudes about the differences between 'person' and 'human' though... I presume it must have been tried at some point in history...

*googles*

Can't find any evidence of any sort of physical experiment in the subject...
But humans and chimps are closer genetically than horses and donkeys, and they can make mules...

!
I need a few chimps and some volunteers for an experiment, pronto!
Should have definitive results in 2-10 months. ^.^
Bikerman
It wouldn't be allowed under various agreements and ethical frameworks that exist in the US/UK and most of the rest of the Western world (rightly so).
Nontheless it has been tried in the past and although no confirmed success has ever been reported the genetics seem to indicate that it is possible.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humanzee
ocalhoun
Bikerman wrote:
It wouldn't be allowed under various agreements and ethical frameworks that exist in the US/UK and most of the rest of the Western world (rightly so).

Well, you could always try it in Africa...
As a plus, chimps would be more readily available, and volunteers would be happy to participate for much less money than in the Western world. ^.^

*edit*
Yes, I realize the ethical concerns. Consent can be bought from humans easily enough, but how to convince the chimps?
Bikerman
I'm sure you are joshing, but it is worth setting out what the ethical concerns would be.
Primarily it would be instrumentalising human life. That is an objection often used by the religious but is one I share. I do not like the idea of breeding humans for a purpose - even an apparently good purpose. Thus recent cases where parents have had another child specifically to act as potential donor for an existing child cause me concern. The notion of breeding a hybrid human is obviously in a different category though, and would be unthinkable for my ethics. Aside from the fundamental ethical objection, there would be more mundane objections - what status would the 'child' have? The 'child' would almost inevitably be a lab-animal and the day we return to breeding humans for experimentation (the Nazis did a bit of it) is a day I would like to see put off indefinitely.
Arty
Maybe the cat was trying to file its claws using his dead friend.

:O
menino
Animals have feelings too, not just us humans.
There's a video of a lion who was raised by humans, and then put in the wild.
A year later, after learning to hunt its own killings, the owners came to see it, and immediately, it hugged its owners, without harming them. Other humans could not get close to it, but maybe they were afraid of it, being a lion and all.

Elephants also herd together as groups and protect each other as such, and if one of them dies, the rest mourn for it.
Also if a new elephant is born, they all blow their trunks.

There are many more instances, and some have been seen in insects also, like bees and ants for example.

I think if animals didn't have feelings, they would probably be extinct, as I don't think breeding is just a primal animal instinct.
deanhills
ocalhoun wrote:
Yes, I realize the ethical concerns. Consent can be bought from humans easily enough, but how to convince the chimps?
Excellent point! Sounds pretty yucky to me however. Never thought about that before. Sounds almost the equivalent of abusing a child. Chimps being basically mostly innocent, human beings with the capacity of being quite vile and evil minded when they choose to be.
Bikerman
Chimps? Innocent? Nah. Chimps are violent when they want to be - in fact they sometimes go to war just like humans, pick on lone strangers and torture and kill them and generally behave like the worst humans on occasion.
Quote:
It has been known for eons that animals will sometimes fight with each other, but systematic warfare was considered a uniquely human trait. It is now known that chimpanzees sometimes engage in long-term aggression with neighboring groups and will systematically murder each member of the “enemy” group. This is accomplished by a band of mostly males silently searching for isolated members of the rival community and killing them. Such campaigns can last months on end with frequently repeated excursions into the rivals’ territory.

http://www.primatefreedom.com/chimpanzees/index.html
Quote:
Research in recent years has focused on chimpanzees and other monkeys who murder their own. Field studies in Tanzania have demonstrated that chimpanzees will attack and kill other chimpanzees, and brutally so.In one study (that took place over a five-year period), a group of male chimpanzees directed attacks on a splinter group of chimps that had broken away from the larger group.Each member of this splinter group was beaten and subsequently died. Young male chimps initiated these attacks, usually using their hands, feet and teeth, though sometimes stones were thrown, as well.

http://www.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474976794596
deanhills
Bikerman wrote:
Chimps? Innocent? Nah. Chimps are violent when they want to be - in fact they sometimes go to war just like humans, pick on lone strangers and torture and kill them and generally behave like the worst humans on occasion.
Guess that is totally in the eye of the beholder. I prefer to see them as innocent. And if they feel threatened, they probably will have the appearance of violence.

This is pretty amazing though Bikerman. In another thread I got "challenged" for wanting to sort out the Great White Shark if it becomes "violent". I guess if I had started that thread with how innocent Great White sharks were, you would have come up with plenty of literature to show how they are known to attack surfers.
Bikerman
deanhills wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
Chimps? Innocent? Nah. Chimps are violent when they want to be - in fact they sometimes go to war just like humans, pick on lone strangers and torture and kill them and generally behave like the worst humans on occasion.
Guess that is totally in the eye of the beholder. I prefer to see them as innocent. And if they feel threatened, they probably will have the appearance of violence.
Threatened? Did you read the articles? Go and google - you will find horrific videos and other examples which I thought would be too disturbing to post in this forum.
Why do you assume I am trying to have a go? I was simply trying to provide some information that you might not have considered, not trying to do you down.
Quote:
This is pretty amazing though Bikerman. In another thread I got "challenged" for wanting to sort out the Great White Shark if it becomes "violent". I guess if I had started that thread with how innocent Great White sharks were, you would have come up with plenty of literature to show how they are known to attack surfers.
Not at all. I am not advocating killing chimps, and I didn't say that the GW shark was 'innocent', I just objected to the notion that any dangerous creature should be killed automatically - just as I would object to killing chimps.
The major difference is that chimps are far more intelligent than the GW. They know pretty well what they are doing.

Anyway, let's avoid any more misunderstandings...I will withdraw from the thread and leave you to it.
Ghost900
I definitely think that animals have feelings and some "human qualities", at least the more social animals. My family's dog has showed emotions a number of times, she was obviously stressed once one my brothers moved out as well as acting very different for a few days. I am not sure whether insects have such feelings and emotions as they don't really show the caring aspect to their other group members.

As for the offspring discussion above, all I can say is that if/when it happens, who ever does it has some serous ethical deficiency or ethical opinion has changed very much.
deanhills
Bikerman wrote:
hreatened? Did you read the articles? Go and google - you will find horrific videos and other examples which I thought would be too disturbing to post in this forum.
Why do you assume I am trying to have a go? I was simply trying to provide some information that you might not have considered, not trying to do you down.
You also find videos of chimps that seem to be doing OK. Your choice.
Quote:
Not at all. I am not advocating killing chimps, and I didn't say that the GW shark was 'innocent', I just objected to the notion that any dangerous creature should be killed automatically - just as I would object to killing chimps.
Me too, unless they threaten to kill me or any other human beings.
Ghost Rider103
deanhills wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
hreatened? Did you read the articles? Go and google - you will find horrific videos and other examples which I thought would be too disturbing to post in this forum.
Why do you assume I am trying to have a go? I was simply trying to provide some information that you might not have considered, not trying to do you down.
You also find videos of chimps that seem to be doing OK. Your choice.


His point was that chimps aren't always so "innocent." In other words, they are sometimes extremely violent, and sometimes they are "ok." Just as humans, they can seem totally "innocent" at times, yet other times they can have their moods and come extremely violent.

So if a chimp acts normal sometimes and violent other times, then of course you'll be able to find videos of cimps acting in both moods... as you can humans.

In this case, neither of you are wrong. Bikerman was just showing you a different point of view, which both are correct. They are both innocent and violent (at times).
deanhills
Ghost Rider103 wrote:
deanhills wrote:
Bikerman wrote:
hreatened? Did you read the articles? Go and google - you will find horrific videos and other examples which I thought would be too disturbing to post in this forum.
Why do you assume I am trying to have a go? I was simply trying to provide some information that you might not have considered, not trying to do you down.
You also find videos of chimps that seem to be doing OK. Your choice.


His point was that chimps aren't always so "innocent." In other words, they are sometimes extremely violent, and sometimes they are "ok." Just as humans, they can seem totally "innocent" at times, yet other times they can have their moods and come extremely violent.

So if a chimp acts normal sometimes and violent other times, then of course you'll be able to find videos of cimps acting in both moods... as you can humans.

In this case, neither of you are wrong. Bikerman was just showing you a different point of view, which both are correct. They are both innocent and violent (at times).
I think I was trying to say some of the same. But thanks for putting both of us in the right. Smile
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