Friday, June 5, 2015
The limit to anthropomorphism confuses me. This class has taught us that we shouldn't assume animals think and behave in the same way humans do. However, in readings such as the one about elephants, we are shown that animals are able to get PTSD and the reading on animal empathy and experimentation tells us that animals can get learned helplessness and depression. These diseases are generally considered human, even if it's only because humans are the ones who found them and labelled them, so isn't saying that animals get them too anthropomorphic? Many arguments are made that animals shouldn't be tested on or abused because they have feelings too, which I completely agree with, but I also think that applying feelings to animals is a form of anthropomorphism because it is applying something that happens to humans to animals. Although I get that not everything that humans and animals have in common were human traits first, I think anthropomorphism can be used in a positive way to help us understand animals based on what we know.