I read an interesting blog by Stephanie Eichberg about animals and about a book which discussed the divide we have in our human experience and phobias
between animal and humanity.
Some Thoughts on the Role of Animals in Medicine
Yet when convenient, and to their detriment we use animals for medical studies to test drugs and study our common disease. Because we have common diseases we know we are part and parcel leaves from the same tree of life. We tend to deny this and at the same time take advantage of our common ancestry. My answer to this is that the only divide between us is our inability to have a common language. Language differences and therefore cultural differences divide segments of humanity as well. This gives me pause to think that as we study the sociology of animals we will eventually see that they have more in common than comparative physiology but a common need for culture or as I would call it
I know Groupness is not a word but in the animal world especially, there are behaviors that meld or govern group dynamics. There was a great discussion in the second book of the Jurrasic Park series which has to with Nature vs. Nurture. Psychologists and scociologists debate this dilemma of what truly influences socially adapted individuals. How much behavior is influenced by upbringing was discussed in term of the non-adaptive aberrant behavior noted among the dinosaurs on the island because they were not raised by adults in a community. These maladaptations have been noted in animal studies in laboratories and zoos for years based on how the animals have been raised. This is common knowledge, perhaps this was discussed in the above mentioned book. In fact, the new Jurrasic World movie side stepped this issue and really did get a maladaptation with the chimera they created.
We are no different than animals in our need for socializing parenting appropriate for each type of species. Each species has it’s own exclusive culture based on communication or the language of the species.
Entertaining as it may be to imagine the animals uniting to take the world from us the humans, there is not an animal culture and a human culture that divides us and them. Even among species of animals each population diverge over time as adaptations occur within groups and a new culture and sometimes a new species develops.
A lonely duck in the school yard.
To sum it all up, communication, or lack thereof, and culture seperate us from all the multitudes of other species and populations of those species.