Wednesday, December 3, 2014

If it's furry...

A researcher has investigated what many...justly or not...would call the weirdest subject I have ever blogged about here on ESE.

Ever heard of "furries?"

They are, as defined by Canadian researcher Debra Soh, people who adopt the identity or persona of an anthropomorphisized animal in social interactions. The popular conception is that many of these are interactions are often sexual in nature. Could furries then possibly be diagnosed with paraphilia? Soh and a fellow researcher attended a furry convention in Toronto to find out, expecting to find a full-on sex orgy with couples just bumpin' away while dressed in animal costumes.

When they got there, nothing could have been further from the truth.

As detailed in the article, the furries were hanging out and talking, playing board games, and showing off their fursuits. Yet even the wearers of said homemade suits were proportionately in the minority. As reported:

"There is an important distinction between fursonas and fursuits, as almost all furries have a fursona, but only a small proportion wears a fursuit."

I could see that being a GRE or SAT logic question. But I digress...

What I liked about this article is how it demonstrates how assumptions and misconceptions about subcultures are often incorrect. We tend to want to categorize people. If you are (fill in the blank) then therefore you must be/enjoy (fill in the blank). Case in point, if you are a furry then you must be a sex addict. No, you're just kinda weird. That's all right. Many subcultures get started by people who already feel ostracized by the world and just want to be weird together. If you've been reading this blog for any amount of time, you no doubt know that I'm weird.

And I'm unquestionably okay with that.

Plus, if you look at the photo provided at the link above, the convention really doesn't look any different than if you gathered a bunch of NFL or NCAA mascots together. Heck, it's not altogether that different from cosplayers. So none of us should be quick to judge.

In fact, one of those wolf or tiger suits look kinda fun. I mean, I'm not ready to plunk down the change for one, but who knows?

For a list of other misconceptions about furries, click here.


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