Reflection: History/Philosophy - Relationship Human/Non-Human
By Michelle Safley (05/08/10 16:02:14)
Related animal: Grizzly Bear

There appear to be two main views towards grizzly bears. The first, that they are misunderstood creatures that simply require we humans to learn the right way to interact with them. The second, that grizzly bears are wild and dangerous and to attempt to befriend them is just asking for trouble. These opposing views are expressed in "Walking with Giants: The Grizzlies of Siberia" and "Grizzly Man", respectively. Charlie Russell's response to Timothy's death also brings up the two views. "Walking with Giants" shows people content near grizzles, and that the bears are content to leave them alone. There is not much of anything in the film to imply that Grizzlies are dangerous and capable of killing and eating humans. "Grizzly Man" starts out by showing Timothy Treadwell interacting with Grizzlies and he appears to have a handle on all of his interactions. Of course, by the end of the film he is no longer living and the real message is that Grizzlies are not as easy to control and understand as Timothy believed them to be. Russell's text mentions views of those people living in Alaska who would have thought Timothy to be crazy, but he also is impressed by how long Timothy was able to last without incident.

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