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Hi, my name is MW, and I…I like centaurs.

Hi, my name is MW, and I…I like centaurs. published on 2 Comments on Hi, my name is MW, and I…I like centaurs.

I’ve had a long-term, back-burner love affair with therianthropic — human/non-human animal creatures — from my earliest days. 

Since I was introduced to Greek myths at a very early age, I was trying to draw centaurs [and failing] as early as age 5. [Another challenge at which I failed was figuring out where centaurs came from. The Greek mythological universe always mentions the rowdy, rambunctious, drunk and annoying male centaurs, the wise tutor Cheiron excepted, but never any females. I spent a long time trying to figure out who the male centaurs mated with to have more centaurs. By the way, I refuse to accept the explanation that a cross between a male centaur and a human woman, a la Rape of the Sabines, would produce a baby centaur. Human + therianthrope =/= therianthrope. The centaurs of Disney’s animated Fantasia, while nauseatingly pastel and cute, appeared in both male and female versions, satisfying my need for a comprehensive reproductive scheme for said creatures.]

Mermaids also figured largely in my childhood interests. I thought they were glamorous, fascinating and magical even before Disney’s animated Little Mermaid appeared in 1989 and popularized such creatures. After the mermaid’s infiltration of mass culture, I still persisted in finding them eminently awesome, though I was more interested in Andersen’s Little Mermaid [and the rest of his sick, twisted fairy tales], mermaid lore in general and, again, a realistic schematic for merpeople. [My sister and I pondered the realistic biology of merpeople extensively. We spent much time wondering exactly how a fish part and a human part could fit together into a cooperative body. If merpeople had piscene nether regions, did they then lay eggs? Did they have gills? Could they breathe underwater? Would they really have all the hair that they are traditionally depicted with? Eventually we decided that realistic merpeople would be more like human-dolphin hybrids, air-breathing, viviparous, mostly hairless, very streamlined and entirely mammalian.]

Before the Age of the Internet, my interest in therianthropes existed in an enjoyable vacuum, far away from others who shared my interest [except for Jill]. Therianthropophilia was a harmless, offbeat interest based in mythology and fairy tales. About 5 to 7 years ago, though, with the democratization of the Intertubes, therianthropophilia’s frame of reference changed. Furry subculture — in which people enjoy a broad spectrum of identifying with, dressing up as, discussing, producing artwork about and getting turned on by non-human animals or therianthropes — became much more visible. [Witness Creature Creator for Victoria 4.1, a set of horns, hooves, tails and paws to make the 3-D model Victoria 4.1 into a deer girl, a cat girl, a devil, etc.]  As furry subculture became more visible, the mainstream made fun of it as a collection of sex perverts in mascot costumes. The general derisive attitude toward furry subculture spread outward and tainted the general view of anything remotely related to therianthropes.

So, anyway, now I feel really odd and self-conscious about my therianthropophilia [which explains why you haven’t seen any therianthropes I’ve been making in Daz — also because they are really BAYUD]. I feel like I can’t just rave about how cool mermaids and centaurs and sphinxes and such are; I have to justify myself by explaining that I’m not sexually attracted to them. Stupid stereotypes aren’t even true, and they tar everyone with the same brush.


Yes. Although I find furries bizarre, at the same time, I love therianthropes….they show the potential of posthumanity or sort of humanity as only liminal things can. I know you don’t view them as human, but in my mind, like werewolves and other changers, they have metaphorical and ideological power. Your vision of merpeople resembles that I got a glimmer of from Rowling and some other sources, and makes sense….Their gendering is interesting to me too, how you mostly see male centaurs and female merpeople and male werewolves. In a way vampires almost seem therianthropic, since in some interpretations they have something of the animal in them…

Some of the roles in LARPs in which I had the most fun I was an animal….its an interesting exercise to try and look at the world through nonhuman eyes.

For example, you find yourself saying “Spoor shaped!” when a human offers you a Hershey’s “Kiss”.

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