Animal Emotions

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The Superior Human? Who Do We Think We Are?

This fascinating documentary dismantles specious speciesism

"Man in his arrogance thinks of himself a great work, worthy the interposition of a deity. [Yet it is] more humble and, I believe, true to consider him created from animals." (Charles Darwin, The Descent of Man)

I've just learned of a new documentary called "The Superior Human?" that is well worth watching. You can view it here. I and many others have written about the myth of human exceptionalism, noting that while we are indeed rather special and unique big-brained, big-footed, arrogant, over-populating, over-consuming, and invasive mammals, individuals of other species also are special and unique in their own ways. None are as wantonly and intentionally destructive of members of their own and other species. 

Based on solid evolutionary theory, namely Charles Darwin's ideas about evolutionary continuity that explain how differences among species are differences in degree rather than kind, claims about human superiority are ill-founded, although they are often used to justify the domination of other animals and their homes. There are no "lower" and "higher" animals and we should stop using this misleading dualistic terminology that promotes anthropocentric specious speciesism. 

I learned a lot from this documentary and I'm sure you will too. Sit back and enjoy it and share it widely. 

 

 

Marc Bekoff, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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