What is Anthro?

4 min read

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skifi's avatar
Too many people has the wrong idea about what does "Anthro" mean...  even before deviantART created a whole gallery devoted to this special kind of art, there are still too many doubts about this category, and maybe that explains many of the mistakes when uploading pictures, images or drawings to our section.

Even when I was still not the Anthro Gallery Director , I tried to explain this concept in a journal entry but couldn't manage to make it clear, and now I think it's the perfect chance for a new attempt. ^___^ To start with, let's take a look at two definitions that may help us.

  1. ...from Wikipedia:

    Anthro: a synonym for anthropomorphism in the furry fandom.

    Anthropomorphism is the attribution of uniquely human characteristics and qualities to nonhuman beings, inanimate objects, or natural or supernatural phenomena (...)
    Anthro Art and may be any fictional work that employs the concept of animal characters with human characteristics. For this reason, any work, in any medium, may be considered part of the anthropomorphic genre simply by inclusion of a fantastic animal character, although such characters are most often seen in comics, cartoons, animated films, allegorical novels, and video games. The science fiction and fantasy genres make frequent use of anthropomorphism, and as a result, are especially popular in furry fandom. Since the 1980s, the term furries has come to refer to anthropomorphic animal characters.
  2. ...from WikiFur:

    Anthropomorphic is a word meaning "like a human." It is used to describe a well-known concept called anthropomorphism: ascribing human characteristics to a non-human being or object. (...) the word can apply to any non-human thing, including animals, plants, and inanimate objects.

    Since the 1980s, the furry fandom has used the word to refer primarily to bipedal animals. Anthropomorphic animals are sometimes called anthro or morphic for short, and art featuring furry characters is sometimes called anthro art. This is somewhat ironic, as anthro ultimately derives from the Greek anthropos, a word that means "human being."

...And, to enlighten you a bit, here you have examples of the most common mistakes ;)

  • :bulletblue: Dragons, as any other kind of Mythical Creature, like for example Mermaids, Unicorns, Bigfoot, Chupacabras or Loch Ness Monsters, are not "Anthro", so they should be uploaded to Fantasy.
  • :bulletblue: Boys or girls with cat ears or tails, are humans with animal features, but NOT animals with human features.... so they are not Anthro, and should be uploaded to the right gallery, for example Manga/Anime if they fit that japanese drawing style.
  • :bulletblue: Believe it or not, there are still miscategorized deviations because drawings featuring people, are submitted to Anthro in the (wrong) belief that "Anthro" means "Human"... if you have read this News Article down to this point, then you can realize they are 100% mistaken

...So I hope this little report has helped you to understand a bit more the purpose Anthro Gallery has in deviantART. I can understand there are not only black and white but a whole range of possibilities, and sometimes the difference between "Animal" and "Anthro", or related to "Fantasy", is a thin red line, but as a general view, the previous definitions are the regulations currently in force, even if that doesn't mean they can't change.... We're flexible, after all, and any kind of feedback is always more than welcome :heart:
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tokyo-lover2's avatar
i think those who like/love anthro must have a thing for zoophilia