Both have ancient roots as storytelling and artistic devices, and most cultures have traditional fables with anthropomorphized animals as characters. People have also routinely attributed human emotions and behavioral traits to wild as well as domesticated animals.
Anthropomorphism derives from its verb form anthropomorphize,[a] itself derived from the Greek ánthrōpos (ἄνθρωπος, lit. "human") and morphē (μορφή, "form"). It is first attested in 1753, originally in reference to the heresy of applying a human form to the Christian God.[b]
From the beginnings of human behavioral modernity in the Upper Paleolithic, about 40,000 years ago, examples of zoomorphic (animal-shaped) works of art occur that may represent the earliest evidence we have of anthropomorphism. One of the oldest known is an ivory sculpture, the Löwenmensch figurine, Germany, a human-shaped figurine with the head of a lioness or lion, determined to be about 32,000 years old.
It is not possible to say what these prehistoric artworks represent. A more recent example is The Sorcerer, an enigmatic cave painting from the Trois-Frères Cave, Ariège, France: the figure's significance is unknown, but it is usually interpreted as some kind of great spirit or master of the animals. In either case there is an element of anthropomorphism.
This anthropomorphic art has been linked by archaeologist Steven Mithen with the emergence of more systematic hunting practices in the Upper Palaeolithic (Mithen 1998). He proposes that these are the product of a change in the architecture of the human mind, an increasing fluidity between the natural history and social intelligences, where anthropomorphism allowed hunters to identify empathetically with hunted animals and better predict their movements.[c]
In religion and mythology, anthropomorphism is the perception of a divine being or beings in human form, or the recognition of human qualities in these beings.
Ancient mythologies frequently represented the divine as deities with human forms and qualities. They resemble human beings not only in appearance and personality; they exhibited many human behaviors that were used to explain natural phenomena, creation, and historical events. The deities fell in love, married, had children, fought battles, wielded weapons, and rode horses and chariots. They feasted on special foods, and sometimes required sacrifices of food, beverage, and sacred objects to be made by human beings. Some anthropomorphic deities represented specific human concepts, such as love, war, fertility, beauty, or the seasons. Anthropomorphic deities exhibited human qualities such as beauty, wisdom, and power, and sometimes human weaknesses such as greed, hatred, jealousy, and uncontrollable anger. Greek deities such as Zeus and Apollo often were depicted in human form exhibiting both commendable and despicable human traits. Anthropomorphism in this case is, more specifically, anthropotheism.
Anthropomorphism has cropped up as a Christian heresy, particularly prominently with the Audians in third century Syria, but also in fourth century Egypt and tenth century Italy. This often was based on a literal interpretation of Genesis 1:27: "So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them".
Some religions, scholars, and philosophers objected to anthropomorphic deities. The earliest known criticism was that of the Greek philosopher Xenophanes (570–480 BCE) who observed that people model their gods after themselves. He argued against the conception of deities as fundamentally anthropomorphic:
But if cattle and horses and lions had hands
or could paint with their hands and create works such as men do,
horses like horses and cattle like cattle
also would depict the gods' shapes and make their bodies
of such a sort as the form they themselves have.
Ethiopians say that their gods are snub–nosed [σιμούς] and black
Thracians that they are pale and red-haired.[d]
Xenophanes said that "the greatest god" resembles man "neither in form nor in mind".
Both Judaism and Islam reject an anthropomorphic deity, believing that God is beyond human comprehension. Judaism's rejection of an anthropomorphic deity grew during the Hasmonean period (circa 300 BCE), when Jewish belief incorporated some Greek philosophy. Judaism's rejection grew further after the Islamic Golden Age in the tenth century, which Maimonides codified in the twelfth century, in his thirteen principles of Jewish faith.[e]
Hindus do not reject the concept of a deity in the abstract unmanifested, but note practical problems. Lord Krishna said in the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 12, Verse 5, that it is much more difficult for people to focus on a deity as the unmanifested than one with form, using anthropomorphic icons (murtis), because people need to perceive with their senses. In Faces in the Clouds, anthropologist Stewart Guthrie proposes that all religions are anthropomorphisms that originate in the brain's tendency to detect the presence or vestiges of other humans in natural phenomena.
In secular thought, one of the most notable criticisms began in 1600 with Francis Bacon, who argued against Aristotle's teleology, which declared that everything behaves as it does in order to achieve some end, in order to fulfill itself. Bacon pointed out that achieving ends is a human activity and to attribute it to nature misconstrues it as humanlike. Modern criticisms followed Bacon's ideas such as critiques of Baruch Spinoza and David Hume. The latter, for instance, embedded his arguments in his wider criticism of human religions and specifically demonstrated in what he cited as their "inconsistence" where, on one hand, the Deity is painted in the most sublime colors but, on the other, is degraded to nearly human levels by giving him human infirmities, passions, and prejudices.
There are also scholars who argue that anthropomorphism is the overestimation of the similarity of humans and nonhumans, therefore, it could not yield accurate accounts.
There are various examples of personification as a literary device in both Hebrew Bible and Christian New Testament and also in the texts of some other religions.
Anthropomorphism, also referred to as personification, is a well established literary device from ancient times. The story of "The Hawk and the Nightingale" in Hesiod's Works and Days preceded Aesop's fables by centuries. Collections of linked fables from India, the Jataka Tales and Panchatantra, also employ anthropomorphized animals to illustrate principles of life. Many of the stereotypes of animals that are recognized today, such as the wily fox and the proud lion, can be found in these collections. Aesop's anthropomorphisms were so familiar by the first century CE that they colored the thinking of at least one philosopher:
And there is another charm about him, namely, that he puts animals in a pleasing light and makes them interesting to mankind. For after being brought up from childhood with these stories, and after being as it were nursed by them from babyhood, we acquire certain opinions of the several animals and think of some of them as royal animals, of others as silly, of others as witty, and others as innocent.
Apollonius noted that the fable was created to teach wisdom through fictions that are meant to be taken as fictions, contrasting them favorably with the poets' stories of the deities that are sometimes taken literally. Aesop, "by announcing a story which everyone knows not to be true, told the truth by the very fact that he did not claim to be relating real events". The same consciousness of the fable as fiction is to be found in other examples across the world, one example being a traditional Ashanti way of beginning tales of the anthropomorphic trickster-spider Anansi: "We do not really mean, we do not really mean that what we are about to say is true. A story, a story; let it come, let it go."
Anthropomorphic motifs have been common in fairy tales from the earliest ancient examples set in a mythological context to the great collections of the Brothers Grimm and Perrault. The Tale of Two Brothers (Egypt, 13th century BCE) features several talking cows and in Cupid and Psyche (Rome, 2nd century CE) Zephyrus, the west wind, carries Psyche away. Later an ant feels sorry for her and helps her in her quest.
Building on the popularity of fables and fairy tales, specifically children's literature began to emerge in the nineteenth century with works such as Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865) by Lewis Carroll, The Adventures of Pinocchio (1883) by Carlo Collodi and The Jungle Book (1894) by Rudyard Kipling, all employing anthropomorphic elements. This continued in the twentieth century with many of the most popular titles having anthropomorphic characters, examples being The Tale of Peter Rabbit (1901) and later books by Beatrix Potter;[f] The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame (1908); Winnie-the-Pooh (1926) and The House at Pooh Corner (1928) by A. A. Milne; and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (1950) and the subsequent books in The Chronicles of Narnia series by C. S. Lewis. In many of these stories the animals can be seen as representing facets of human personality and character. As John Rowe Townsend remarks, discussing The Jungle Book in which the boy Mowgli must rely on his new friends the bear Baloo and the black panther Bagheera, "The world of the jungle is in fact both itself and our world as well". A notable work aimed at an adult audience is George Orwell's Animal Farm, in which all the main characters are anthropomorphic animals. Non-animal examples include Rev.W Awdry's children's stories of Thomas the Tank Engine and other anthropomorphic locomotives.
The fantasy genre developed from mythological, fairy tale, and Romance motifs and characters, sometimes with anthropomorphic animals. The best-selling examples of the genre are The Hobbit (1937) and The Lord of the Rings[g] (1954–1955), both by J. R. R. Tolkien, books peopled with talking creatures such as ravens, spiders, and the dragon Smaug and a multitude of anthropomorphic goblins and elves. John D. Rateliff calls this the "Doctor Dolittle Theme" in his book The History of the Hobbit and Tolkien saw this anthropomorphism as closely linked to the emergence of human language and myth: "...The first men to talk of 'trees and stars' saw things very differently. To them, the world was alive with mythological beings... To them the whole of creation was "myth-woven and elf-patterned".'
Richard Adams developed a distinctive take on anthropomorphic writing in the 1970s: his debut novel, Watership Down (1972), featured rabbits that could talk, with their own distinctive language (Lapine) and mythology, and included a warren, Efrafa, run along the lines of a police state. Despite this, Adams attempted to ensure his characters' behavior mirrored that of wild rabbits, engaging in fighting, copulating and defecating, drawing on Ronald Lockley's study The Private Life of the Rabbit as research. Adams returned to anthropomorphic storytelling in his later novels The Plague Dogs (1977) and Traveller (1988).
By the 21st century, the children's picture book market had expanded massively.[h] Perhaps a majority of picture books have some kind of anthropomorphism, with popular examples being The Very Hungry Caterpillar (1969) by Eric Carle and The Gruffalo (1999) by Julia Donaldson.
Anthropomorphism in literature and other media led to a sub-culture known as furry fandom, which promotes and creates stories and artwork involving anthropomorphic animals, and the examination and interpretation of humanity through anthropomorphism. This can often be shortened in searches as "anthro", used by some as an alternative term to "furry".
Anthropomorphic characters have also been a staple of the comic book genre. The most prominent one was Neil Gaiman's the Sandman which had a huge impact on how characters that are physical embodiments are written in the fantasy genre. Other examples also include the mature Hellblazer (personified political and moral ideas), Fables and its spin-off series Jack of Fables, which was unique for having anthropomorphic representation of literary techniques and genres. Various Japanese manga and anime have used anthropomorphism as the basis of their story. Examples include Squid Girl (anthropomorphized squid), Hetalia: Axis Powers (personified countries), Upotte!! (personified guns), Arpeggio of Blue Steel and Kancolle (personified ships).
Some of the most notable examples are the Walt Disney characters the Magic Carpet from Disney's Aladdin franchise, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit; the Looney Tunes characters Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and Porky Pig; and an array of others from the 1920s to present day.
In the Disney/Pixar films Cars (2006), Cars 2 (2011), Planes (2013), Planes: Fire & Rescue (2014) and Cars 3 (2017), all the characters are anthropomorphic vehicles, while Toy Story (1995), Toy Story 2 (1999), and Toy Story 3 (2010) are anthropomorphic toys, and so will be Toy Story 4 (2019). Other Pixar films like Monsters, Inc. (2001) and Monsters University (2013) are anthropomorphic monsters, and Finding Nemo (2003) and Finding Dory (2016) are anthropomorphic marine life creatures (like fish, sharks, and whales). Discussing anthropomorphic animals from DreamWorks movies Madagascar (2005), Madagascar, Escape 2 Africa (2008), and Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (2012), Laurie suggests that "social differences based on conflict and contradiction are naturalized and made less 'contestable' through the classificatory matrix of human and nonhuman relations". Blue Sky Studios of 20th Century Fox films like Ice Age (2002), Ice Age: The Meltdown (2006), Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (2009), Ice Age: Continental Drift (2012), and Ice Age: Collision Course (2016) are anthropomorphic extinct animals.
Since the 1960s, anthropomorphism has also been represented in various animated television shows such as Biker Mice From Mars (1993–1996) and SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron (1993–1995). Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, first aired in 1987, features four pizza-loving anthropomorphic turtles with a great knowledge of ninjutsu, led by their anthropomorphic rat sensei, Master Splinter. Nickelodeon's longest running animated TV series SpongeBob SquarePants (1999–present), revolves around SpongeBob, a yellow sea sponge, living in the underwater town of Bikini Bottom with his anthropomorphic marine life friends. Cartoon Network's animated series The Amazing World of Gumball (2011–present) takes place about anthropomorphic animals and inanimate objects.
In the American animated TV series Family Guy, one of the show's main characters, Brian, is a dog. Brian shows many human characteristics – he walks upright, talks, smokes, and drinks Martinis – but also acts like a normal dog in other ways; for example he cannot resist chasing a ball and barks at the mailman, believing him to be a threat.
The PBS Kids animated series Let's Go Luna! centers on an anthropomorphic female Moon who speaks, sings, and dances. She comes down out of the sky to serve as a tutor of international culture to the three main characters: a boy frog and wombat and a girl butterfly, who are supposed to be preschool children traveling a world populated by anthropomorphic animals with a circus run by their parents.
Sonic the Hedgehog, a game released in 1991, features a speedy blue hedgehog as the protagonist. This series' characters are almost all anthropomorphic animals such as foxes, cats, and other hedgehogs who are able to speak and walk on their hind legs like normal humans. As with most anthropomorphisms of animals, clothing is of little or no importance, where some characters may be fully clothed while some wear only shoes and gloves.
Another example in video games is Super Mario Bros., which was released in 1985. Some of the characters include Yoshi, a dinosaur who is able to talk, run and jump, and Bowser, a "Koopa" that is able to perform most human characteristics, with some exceptions, as he can breathe fire.
Claes Oldenburg's soft sculptures are commonly described as anthropomorphic. Depicting common household objects, Oldenburg's sculptures were considered Pop Art. Reproducing these objects, often at a greater size than the original, Oldenburg created his sculptures out of soft materials. The anthropomorphic qualities of the sculptures were mainly in their sagging and malleable exterior which mirrored the not so idealistic forms of the human body. In "Soft Light Switches" Oldenburg creates a household light switch out of vinyl. The two identical switches, in a dulled orange, insinuate nipples. The soft vinyl references the aging process as the sculpture wrinkles and sinks with time.
In the essay "Art and Objecthood", Michael Fried makes the case that "Literalist art" (Minimalism) becomes theatrical by means of anthropomorphism. The viewer engages the minimalist work, not as an autonomous art object, but as a theatrical interaction. Fried references a conversation in which Tony Smith answers questions about his "six-foot cube, Die."
Q: Why didn't you make it larger so that it would loom over the observer? A: I was not making a monument. Q: then why didn't you make it smaller so that the observer could see over the top? A: I was not making an object.
Fried implies an anthropomorphic connection by means of "a surrogate person-that is, a kind of statue."
The minimalist decision of "hollowness" in much of their work, was also considered by Fried, to be "blatantly anthropomorphic." This "hollowness" contributes to the idea of a separate inside; an idea mirrored in the human form. Fried considers the Literalist art's "hollowness" to be "biomorphic" as it references a living organism.
Curator Lucy Lippard's Eccentric Abstraction show, in 1966, sets up Briony Fer's writing of a post minimalist anthropomorphism. Reacting to Fried's interpretation of minimalist art's "looming presence of objects which appear as actors might on a stage", Fer interprets the artists in Eccentric Abstraction to a new form of anthropomorphism. She puts forth the thoughts of Surrealist writer Roger Caillois, who speaks of the "spacial lure of the subject, the way in which the subject could inhabit their surroundings." Caillous uses the example of an insect who "through camouflage does so in order to become invisible... and loses its distinctness." For Fer, the anthropomorphic qualities of imitation found in the erotic, organic sculptures of artists Eva Hesse and Louise Bourgeois, are not necessarily for strictly "mimetic" purposes. Instead, like the insect, the work must come into being in the "scopic field... which we cannot view from outside."
For branding, merchandising, and representation, figures known as mascots are now often employed to personify sports teams, corporations, and major events such as the World's Fair and the Olympics. These personifications may be simple human or animal figures, such as Ronald McDonald or the ass that represents the United States's Democratic Party. Other times, they are anthropomorphic items, such as "Clippy" or the "Michelin Man". Most often, they are anthropomorphic animals such as the Energizer Bunny or the San Diego Chicken.
The practice is particularly widespread in Japan, where cities, regions, and companies all have mascots, collectively known as yuru-chara. Two of the most popular are Kumamon (a bear who represents Kumamoto Prefecture) and Funassyi (a pear who represents Funabashi, a suburb of Tokyo).
Other examples of anthropomorphism include the attribution of human traits to animals, especially domesticated pets such as dogs and cats. Examples of this include thinking a dog is smiling simply because he is showing his teeth, or a cat is bored because it is not reacting to commands.
Anthropomorphism may be beneficial to the welfare of animals. A 2012 study by Butterfield et al. found that utilizing anthropomorphic language when describing dogs created a greater willingness to help them in situations of distress. Previous studies have shown that individuals who attribute human characteristics to animals are less willing to eat them  and that the degree to which individuals perceive minds in other animals predicts the moral concern afforded to them. It is possible that anthropomorphism leads humans to like non-humans more when they have apparent human qualities, since perceived similarity has been shown to increase prosocial behavior toward other humans.
In science, the use of anthropomorphic language that suggests animals have intentions and emotions has traditionally been deprecated as indicating a lack of objectivity. Biologists have been warned to avoid assumptions that animals share any of the same mental, social, and emotional capacities of humans, and to rely instead on strictly observable evidence. In 1927 Ivan Pavlov wrote that animals should be considered "without any need to resort to fantastic speculations as to the existence of any possible subjective states". More recently, The Oxford companion to animal behaviour (1987) advised that "one is well advised to study the behaviour rather than attempting to get at any underlying emotion". Some scientists, like William M Wheeler (writing apologetically of his use of anthropomorphism in 1911), have used anthropomorphic language in metaphor to make subjects more humanly comprehensible or memorable.[i]
Despite the impact of Charles Darwin's ideas in The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals (Konrad Lorenz in 1965 called him a "patron saint" of ethology) ethology has generally focused on behavior, not on emotion in animals. Although in other ways Darwin was and is the epitome of science, his acceptance of anecdote and anthropomorphism stands out in sharp contrast to the lengths to which later scientists would go to overlook apparent mindedness, selfhood, individuality, and agency:
The study of great apes in their own environment and in captivity[j] has changed attitudes to anthropomorphism. In the 1960s the three so-called "Leakey's Angels", Jane Goodall studying chimpanzees, Dian Fossey studying gorillas and Biruté Galdikas studying orangutans, were all accused of "that worst of ethological sins – anthropomorphism". The charge was brought about by their descriptions of the great apes in the field; it is now more widely accepted that empathy has an important part to play in research.
De Waal has written: "To endow animals with human emotions has long been a scientific taboo. But if we do not, we risk missing something fundamental, about both animals and us." Alongside this has come increasing awareness of the linguistic abilities of the great apes and the recognition that they are tool-makers and have individuality
Writing of cats in 1992, veterinarian Bruce Fogle points to the fact that "both humans and cats have identical neurochemicals and regions in the brain responsible for emotion" as evidence that "it is not anthropomorphic to credit cats with emotions such as jealousy".
In science fiction, an artificially-intelligent computer or robot, even though it has not been programmed with human emotions, often spontaneously experiences those emotions anyway: for example, Agent Smith in The Matrix was influenced by a "disgust" toward humanity. This is an example of anthropomorphism: in reality, while an artificial intelligence could perhaps be deliberately programmed with human emotions, or could develop something similar to an emotion as a means to an ultimate goal if it is useful to do so, it would not spontaneously develop human emotions for no purpose whatsoever, as portrayed in fiction.
One example of anthropomorphism would be to believe that your PC is angry at you because you insulted it; another would be to believe that an intelligent robot would naturally find a woman sexy and be driven to mate with her. Scholars sometimes disagree with each other about whether a particular prediction about an artificial intelligence's behavior is logical, or whether the prediction constitutes illogical anthropomorphism. An example that might initially be considered anthropomorphism, but is in fact a logical statement about an artificial intelligence's behavior, would be the Dario Floreano experiments where certain robots spontaneously evolved a crude capacity for "deception", and tricked other robots into eating "poison" and dying: here a trait, "deception", ordinarily associated with people rather than with machines, spontaneously evolves in a type of convergent evolution. The conscious use of anthropomorphic metaphor is not intrinsically unwise; ascribing mental processes to the computer, under the proper circumstances, may serve the same purpose as it does when we do it to other people: it may help us to understand what the computer will do, how our actions will affect the computer, how to compare computers with ourselves, and conceivably how to design computer programs. However, inappropriate use of anthropomorphic metaphors can result in false beliefs about the behavior of computers, for example by causing people to overestimate how "flexible" computers are. According to Paul R. Cohen and Edward Feigenbaum, in order to differentiate between anthropomorphization and logical prediction of AI behavior, "the trick is to know enough about how humans and computers think to say exactly what they have in common, and, when we lack this knowledge, to use the comparison to suggest theories of human thinking or computer thinking."
Computers overturn the childhood hierarchical taxonomy of "stones (non-living) → plants (living) → animals (conscious) → humans (rational)", by introducing a non-human "actor" that appears to regularly behave rationally. Much of computing terminology derives from anthropomorphic metaphors: computers can "read", "write", or "catch a virus". Information technology presents no clear correspondence with any other entities in the world besides humans; the options are either to leverage a mushy, imprecise human metaphor, or to reject imprecise metaphor and make use of more precise, domain-specific technical terms.
People often grant an unnecessary social role to computers during interactions. The underlying causes are debated; Youngme Moon and Clifford Nass propose that humans are emotionally, intellectually and physiologically biased toward social activity, and so when presented with even tiny social cues, deeply-infused social responses are triggered automatically. The field of "social computing" attempts to make computers easier to use by leveraging anthropomorphism as a "language" of human-computer interaction.
In psychology, the first empirical study of anthropomorphism was conducted in 1944 by Fritz Heider and Marianne Simmel. In the first part of this experiment, the researchers showed a 2-and-a-half minute long animation of several shapes moving around on the screen in varying directions at various speeds. When subjects were asked to describe what they saw, they gave detailed accounts of the intentions and personalities of the shapes. For instance, the large triangle was characterized as a bully, chasing the other two shapes until they could trick the large triangle and escape. The researchers concluded that when people see objects making motions for which there is no obvious cause, they view these objects as intentional agents.
Modern psychologists generally characterize anthropomorphism as a cognitive bias. That is, anthropomorphism is a cognitive process by which people use their schemas about other humans as a basis for inferring the properties of non-human entities in order to make efficient judgements about the environment, even if those inferences are not always accurate. Schemas about humans are used as the basis because this knowledge is acquired early in life, is more detailed than knowledge about non-human entities, and is more readily accessible in memory. Anthropomorphism can also function as a strategy to cope with loneliness when other human connections are not available.
Since making inferences requires cognitive effort, anthropomorphism is likely to be triggered only when certain aspects about a person and their environment are true. Psychologist Adam Waytz and his colleagues created a three-factor theory of anthropomorphism to describe these aspects and predict when people are most likely to anthropomorphize. The three factors are:
When elicited agent knowledge is low and effectance and sociality are high, people are more likely to anthropomorphize. Various dispositional, situational, developmental, and cultural variables can affect these three factors, such as need for cognition, social disconnection, cultural ideologies, uncertainty avoidance, etc.
Children appear to anthropomorphize and use egocentric reasoning from an early age and use it more frequently than adults. Examples of this are describing a storm cloud as "angry" or drawing flowers with faces. This penchant for anthropomorphism is likely because children have acquired vast amounts of socialization, but not as much experience with specific non-human entities, so thus they have less developed alternative schemas for their environment. In contrast, autistic children tend to describe anthropomorphized objects in purely mechanical terms because they have difficulties with theory of mind.
In people with depression, social anxiety, or other mental illnesses, emotional support animals are a useful component of treatment partially because anthropomorphism of these animals can satisfy the patients' need for social connection.
Anthropomorphism of inanimate objects can affect product buying behavior. When products seem to resemble a human schema, such as the front of a car resembling a face, potential buyers evaluate that product more positively than if they don't anthropomorphize the object.
People also tend to trust robots to do more complex tasks such as driving a car or childcare if the robot resembles humans in ways such as having a face, voice, and name; mimicking human motions; expressing emotion; and displaying some variability in behavior.
Afghanis-tan (あふがにすタン, Afuganisu-tan, see note on name below) or Afghanistan is a Japanese yonkoma manga, originally published as a webcomic, by Timaking (ちまきing). It is also the name of the heroine of the manga. The manga is nicknamed Afgan (あふがん, Afugan)Animistic fallacy
The animistic fallacy is the informal fallacy of arguing that an event or situation necessarily arose because someone intentionally acted to cause it. While it could be that someone set out to effect a specific goal, the fallacy appears in an argument that states this must be the case. The name of the fallacy comes from the animistic belief that changes in the physical world are the work of conscious spirits.Anthropomorphism in Kabbalah
Kabbalah, the central system in Jewish mysticism, uses subtle anthropomorphic analogies and metaphors to describe God in Judaism. These include male-female influences in the Divine. Kabbalists repeatedly warn and stress the need to divorce their notions from any corporeality, dualism, plurality, or spatial and temporal connotations. As "the Torah speaks in the language of Man", the empirical terms are necessarily imposed upon man's experience in this world. Once the analogy is described, its limitations are then related to, stripping the kernel of its husk, to arrive at a truer conception.
Due to the danger of impure material analogy, Kabbalists traditionally restricted oral transmission to close circles, with sincere motives, advanced learning and elite preparation, while also seeking possible dissemination from the 16th century to further Messianic preparation. Understanding Kabbalah through its unity with complete mainstream Talmudic, Halachic and philosophical proficiency was a traditional prerequisite to avert fallacies. They attributed 17th-18th century Sabbatean heresies to false corporeality of Kabbalah through unworthy motives. Later Hasidic thought saw its communal popularisation as a safeguard against esoteric corporeality, by its new internalisation of Jewish mysticism through the psychological spiritual experience of man.Kabbalah emerged parallel to, and soon after, the rationalist tradition of Medieval Jewish philosophy. Maimonides articulated normative Jewish theology in his philosophical stress against any false corporeal interpretation of references to God in the Hebrew Bible and Rabbinic literature, encapsulated in his 3rd principle of faith and legal codification of Monotheism. He formulated the philosophical transcendence of the Godhead through negative theology. Kabbalists agreed with this but gave a radical, different immanent approach to God by relating to Divine emanations. These involved Medieval Zoharic notions of Divine attributes and male–female powers, recast though 16th century Lurianism as cosmic Withdrawal, exile–redemption and Divine Personas, further emphasising the non-corporeal nature of its personified doctrines which became dominant in early-modern Judaism. Nonetheless, Kabbalists carefully chose their terminology to denote subtle connotations and profound relationships in the Divine spiritual influences. More accurately, as they describe the emanation of the Material world from the Spiritual realms, the analogous anthropomorphisms and material metaphors themselves derive through cause and effect from their precise root analogies on High.Anthropopathism
Anthropopathism (from Greek ἄνθρωπος anthropos, "human" and πάθος pathos, "suffering") is the attribution of human emotions, or the ascription of human feelings or passions to a non-human being, generally to a deity.
By comparison, the term anthropomorphism originally referred to the attribution of human form to a non-human being, but in modern usage anthropomorphism has come to encompass both meanings.Audianism
The Audians or Anthropomorphites were a sect of Christians in the fourth century in Syria and Scythia, named after their founder Audius (or Audaeus), who took literally the text of Genesis, i, 27, that God created mankind in his own image.Ayudhapurusha
Ayudhapurusha is the anthropomorphic depiction of a divine weapon in Hindu art. Ayudhapurushas are sometimes considered as partial incarnates of their divine owners.The sex of the personified weapon is determined by the gender of the weapon in the Sanskrit language. The suffix "purusha" (man) is added to masculine weapons and "devi" (goddess) to female ones. The weapons Shakti, Heti (a Hatchet-like weapon) and Gada (mace), especially Kaumodaki (the mace of Vishnu), Dhanus/Dhanushya ("bow") are women. Chakra, especially Vishnu's Sudarshana Chakra (discus of Vishnu), Shankha ("conch"), Padma (lotus), Ankusha (elephant goad), Pasha (noose), Trisula (trident), vajra (thunderbolt), Khadga (sword), Danda (a sceptre or club), Bana/Shara ("arrow") and Bhindi (sling) are depicted male.While weapons are personified in ancient Hindu epics like the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, the ayudhapurushas were depicted in sculpture starting from the Gupta era. They might be depicted as humans with the weapons against them or holding the weapon or with the weapon on their head or emerging from it. The most popular ayudhapurushas are associated with the god Vishnu and appear in his iconography.Finger of God
The "finger of God" is a phrase used in the Bible. In Exodus 8:16–20 it is used during the plagues of Egypt by the Egyptian priests. In Exodus 31:18 and Deuteronomy 9:10 it refers to the method by which the Ten Commandments were written on tablets of stone that were brought down from biblical Mount Sinai by Moses. It was used once by Jesus in the Gospel of Luke to describe how he had cast out demons.Furry fandom
The furry fandom is a subculture interested in anthropomorphic animal characters with human personalities and characteristics. Examples of anthropomorphic attributes include exhibiting human intelligence and facial expressions, speaking, walking on two legs, and wearing clothes. The term "furry fandom" is also used to refer to the community of people who gather on the Internet and at furry conventions.Hinomoto Oniko
Hinomoto Oniko (日本 鬼子) is a Japanese moe character created in 2010 which originated from the Breaking News (VIP) Board on 2channel, and has since become an internet meme within various forums and imageboards in Japan. The character is a moe anthropomorphism of the phrase "日本鬼子", a commonly used Chinese ethnic slur against persons of Japanese descent.Inori Aizawa
Inori Aizawa (Japanese: 藍澤 祈, Chinese: 藍澤祈), also known as Internet Explorer-tan, is a moe anthropomorphism mascot character, originally of the Internet Explorer (IE) web browser and currently of its successor, Microsoft Edge, created by Microsoft Singapore and designed by Collateral Damage Studios. Aizawa was created in celebration of Anime Festival Asia 2013, and is featured in a video, Facebook profile as well as a special edition of the browser. Inori's purpose is to help advertise IE, and to convince anime fans to return to using the browser, due to its falling popularity. The character has received mostly positive reception.Kaiju Girls
Kaiju Girls (怪獣娘 (かいじゅうがーるず), Kaijū Musume (Kaijū Gārūzu)) is an ongoing series of web anime shorts that first aired September 27, 2016, provided by the Docomo Anime Store service. These shorts are part of the Ultra Monsters Anthropomorphic Project (ウルトラ怪獣擬人化計画, Ultra Kaijū Gijinka Keikaku), a moe anthropomorphism project made by Tsuburaya Productions based on past monsters/aliens that have appeared in Ultra Series. Other than the short series, a manga series, a novel series and other projects are being considered in development. A second season premiered in 2018. A sequel film, titled Kaijuu Girls (Black), was released on November 23, 2018.Kitab Akhbar as-Sifat
Kitab Akhbar as-Sifat, or Bāz al‐ašhab al‐munqadd 'alà muhālifī al‐madhab (The Gray Falcon Which Attacks the Offenders of the [Hanbalī] School), is a theological polemic written by Hanbali Islamic scholar Abu'l-Faraj ibn al-Jawzi between 1185 and 1192. The polemic is primarily directed at what, Ibn al-Jawzi held to be, growing anthropomorphic beliefs within the Hanbali school of jurisprudential thought. It singles out three prominent teachers within the Hanbali school: Al Hasan ibn Hamid (d. 1013), or Ibn Hamid, Muhammad ibn al-Husayn (d.1066), or al-Qadi Abu Ya'la, and Ibn al-Jawzi's own teacher, Ali ibn Ubayd Allah, or Ibn az-Zaghuni (d. 1132), contending that they shirked from the beliefs of the school's founder, Ahmad ibn Hanbal.Moe anthropomorphism
Moe anthropomorphism (萌え擬人化, moe gijinka) is a form of anthropomorphism in anime and manga where moe qualities are given to non-human beings, objects, concepts, or phenomena. In addition to moe features, moe anthropomorphisms are also characterized by their accessories, which serve to emphasize their original forms before anthropomorphosis. The characters here, usually in a kind of cosplay, are drawn to represent an inanimate object or popular consumer product. Part of the humor of this personification comes from the personality ascribed to the character (often satirical) and the sheer arbitrariness of characterizing a variety of machines, objects, and even physical places as cute.
This form of anthropomorphism is very common in otaku subcultures. With the exception of kemonomimi (which are human-like characters that have animal features), many moe anthropomorphizations started as dōjin efforts. At first many were the results of discussions on Japanese Internet forums such as 2channel or Futaba Channel. The trend spread out of dōjin circles as commercial anime and manga also prominently feature characters who are personifications of inanimate objects.OS-tan
The OS-tan is an Internet meme that originated within the Japanese Futaba Channel. The OS-tan are the moe anthropomorphism/personification of several operating systems by various amateur Japanese artists. The OS-tan are typically depicted as women, with the OS-tan representative of Microsoft Windows operating systems usually depicted as sisters of varying ages. The -tan element in the term is a hypocoristic suffix from Japanese.
Though initially appearing only in fan work, the OS-tan proved popular enough that Microsoft branches in Singapore and Taiwan used the OS-tan concept as the basis for ad campaigns for Internet Explorer and Microsoft Silverlight, respectively.Otto the Orange
Otto the Orange is the mascot for the Syracuse Orange, the athletic teams of Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York, USA. Otto is an anthropomorphism of the color orange, wearing a large blue hat and blue pants. Otto can usually be seen at Syracuse sporting events in the Carrier Dome and other university sporting events.Pathetic fallacy
The phrase pathetic fallacy is a literary term for the attribution of human emotion and conduct to things found in nature that are not human. It is a kind of personification that occurs in poetic descriptions, when, for example, clouds seem sullen, when leaves dance, or when rocks seem indifferent. The British cultural critic John Ruskin coined the term in his book, Modern Painters (1843–60).Zoomorphism
The word zoomorphism derives from the Greek ζωον (zōon), meaning "animal", and μορφη (morphē), meaning "shape" or "form". It can mean:
Art that imagines humans as non-human animals
Art that portrays one species of animal like another species of animal
Art that creates patterns using animal imagery, or animal style
Deities depicted in animal form, such as exist in ancient Egyptian religion
Therianthropy: the ability to shapeshift into animal form
Attributing animal form or other animal characteristics to anything other than an animal; similar to but broader than anthropomorphism
The tendency of viewing human behaviour in terms of the behaviour of animals, contrary to anthropomorphism, which views animal or non-animal behaviour in human terms
|By life situation|
Surnames by country
|Manners of address|