I've mentioned fictanthropy a few times before and never explained what it was, so, since 1) the topic of "human but a bit to the left" was brought up yesterday, 2) I'm in a fictionkind shift, and 3) it's the anniversary of my fictionkind awakening, I figured it was about time I write something about it.

I came up with the word as a joke. @centuriosenex had written about her gripes with the word 'therianthropy' and how, by all rights, she's more of an 'anthroptera' – a bat experiencing humanity, rather than a human experiencing bat-ness. Which is a discussion that was really sparked by some folks over on The Accursed Place (I am not responsible for any braincells you might lose upon clicking this link) trying to redefine therian as "a person experiencing animality," rather than the more common "a person who identifies as an animal." (which is not to say that the latter definition is great, but it's certainly better than the former).

'Fictanthrope' was conceived from spite and born as a joke. But nonetheless it resonates with me. I'm not human, but I do experience humanity. And when I'm in these shifts I'm not not human, if you get what I mean. "Human but a bit to the left." Human how it's defined in another universe.

So a fictanthrope would be someone who identifies as a type of human found in fiction/stories/myth/etc (the implication being "rather than the type of human found in this world" but of course I can't rule out identifying as multiple kinds of human at once :P). A fictanthrope isn't human per definition, they just, in the words of the TG admins, "experience humanity." Or at least a fictional version of it.

In my own case, I don't understand the humans around me. They look weird and their mannerisms are alien. I wouldn't mind having a human body - just a different human body. When I try to define the kind of "human" I might perceive myself as, it's one defined by it's evolutionary history, instincts, behavior, and its place among all the other sapient species in the universe. My fictotype is human-as-an-animal. Human-as-a-species. Human-as-an-alien. Which feels somehow different from the way I perceive the humans around me, and the way they perceive each other.

Last updated: December 2021

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