2
$\begingroup$

Anthropomorphism is the attribution of human traits, emotions, or intentions to non-human entities. However, one often can observe the inverse happening as well. Namely the attribution of non-human entities’ traits, emotions, or intentions to human entities. For example the biography book about Winston Churchill is called “The Last Lion” or professional boxers being nicknamed “Pitbull”, “Tiger”,”The Hammer”, etc.

Or would this be just an extension of anthropomorphism in which humans attribute human traits, emotions, or intentions onto non-human entities and then relate them back to humans again? Because, in order to attribute non-human entities’ traits, emotions, or intentions onto humans, one would first need to attribute human traits, emotions, or intentions onto non-human entities?

$\endgroup$
5
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ I don't think this is really a psychological concept but a literary one, as in similes and metaphors. $\endgroup$
    – Bryan Krause
    Nov 19 at 15:18
  • $\begingroup$ I agree with @BryanKrause. I think this has a better fit in the English Language Usage site $\endgroup$ Nov 19 at 18:45
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Kroko I can migrate this question for you if a purely linguistic answer would be fine with you. $\endgroup$
    – Steven Jeuris
    Nov 19 at 19:09
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I think this depends on the context behind the anthropomorphism. There is literary anthropomorphism, which include similes and metaphors that describe non-human elements with human characteristics, and there's also stories with humanoid and/or talking animals. Then you have believed anthropomorphism; quite similar to deification; believing there to be e.g. an intent behind the wind. This is more like a bias caused by our neurology being tuned to finding life and thus misinterpreting non-alive stimuli as alive (or human). I'd say the inverse to this is dehumanization and objectification. $\endgroup$
    – A. Kvåle
    Nov 20 at 14:04
  • $\begingroup$ @BryanKrause I believe there is a sense of anthropomorphism which is definitely linked to neuroscience and psychology. Perhaps OP should edit their question to fit this sense more. See my other comment for elaboration on the neuroscientific sense of anthropomorphism. $\endgroup$
    – A. Kvåle
    Nov 20 at 14:07
2
$\begingroup$

Wikipedia explains zoomorphism,

Contrary to anthropomorphism, which views animal or non-animal behavior in human terms, zoomorphism is the tendency of viewing human behavior in terms of the behavior of animals.

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.