Reflection: Non-Human Animal Perception and Cognition
reflection on the inclass movies
By Jenna Ferri (05/07/10 16:01:11)
Related animal: Bear

The movies we watched in class this week were insightful and enlightening. While both has controversial issues supporting them like whether or not the two parties were actually helping the bears, the individuals definitely connected with these bears on a deeper level than many humans have.
The first movie was interesting in the fact that this couple didn't want to necessary get close to the bears and treat them as pets but instead wanted to observe their mannerisms and understand them better for educational purposes. This was apparent in the way they raised the orphaned bear cubs. They kept a very hands off approach and tried to keep them as wild as possible through minimum human contact. By treating all of the bears they came across in this way, they were trying to prove that in a peaceful relationship between bear and human, neither party should feel threatened.
In the second movie he took an entirely different approach, one I did not agree with. He treated these bears as if they were his pets and ignored the fact that human encounters were foreign to them and his way of interacting was probably threatening. By naming the bears it became obvious his obsession to treat these bears like pets or even equals not wild animals. What I disliked most was the way he tricked the bears to come closer to him by targeting their curiousity and then would hit them when they got to close for his comfort. This push pull attitude was confusing to the bears and in my opinion was not a positive experience. Also him thinking he was guardian of these bears was also false because he was only really in the background of their lives.
Overall the films were interesting and gave two different views on human bear collabortation and I enjoyed them both very much.

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