Comparing Animality And Humanity On The Island Of Doctor Moreau And Life Of Pi

1597 Words Nov 23rd, 2016 7 Pages
The Contrast Between Animality and Humanity in The Island of Doctor Moreau and Life of Pi
One of the major cultural anxieties that prevails in society is the relationship between humans and animals and the distinction between humanity and animality. Humans are often depicted as being a higher form of animal, most commonly induced by religious practices. However, upon isolation or fear of death, the human thought process tends to revert to what is associated to animal-like behaviour. Humans tend to separate themselves from animal life forms as animals are seen as vicious, brutish and capable of committing acts that humans refrain from. Because of this cultural anxiety, much of literature embodies the ideology of animality and humanity and the relationship that persists between the two. Both The Island of Doctor Moreau, written by H. G. Wells, and the Life of Pi, written by Yann Martel, juxtapose animals to humans to demonstrate that humans are in fact a higher form of animal. However, in conjunction with of a setting of long term isolation and the persisting fear of death, in which animals continually experience, it is demonstrated that humans revert into a primitive, animal-like state that correlates a distinct similarity between animality and humanity.
Humans often define themselves as being distinctly different than animals for two main reasons: for an animal to be human-like, it must act like a human and is fundamentally not human, and animal behaviour is perceived as…

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