Exploring the relationship between anthropomorphism and local perceptions of long-tailed Macaques
Lee, Valerie Kai Yern
Date of Issue2019
School of Social Sciences
Anthropomorphism refers to the tendency to attribute nonhuman entities with humanlike characteristics (Epley, Waytz, & Cacioppo, 2007). As a natural tendency in humans, understanding the consequences and implications of anthropomorphism is important in diverse disciplines such as consumer research, ethology, and psychology. In order to facilitate further understanding of anthropomorphism, this study was designed to examine anthropomorphic tendency in relation to human behavior and perceptions of macaques. In particular, I study the associations between anthropomorphic tendency and four other variables: knowledge of macaques, perceptions of macaques, behavioral reactions to macaque behavior, and interpretation of macaque behavior. Generally, findings indicated a weak and non–significant relationship between anthropomorphic tendency and perception of macaques. I suggest several factors that could have influenced the results, such as insufficient sample size and mediating factors that were not accounted for. The direction of correlations was, however, as expected, indicating promising results for future similar studies with more well–developed measures and a larger sample size. Finally, theoretical and practical implications of the findings was discussed, including the role of anthropomorphism in reducing human–macaque conflict in Singapore.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University