What is Humanimal?


The humanimal is a hybrid of human and animal features, biological characteristics and/or behaviours.

The Wolf Children of Midnapure: feral children found living with wolves in Bengal, India, in 1920. Their eyes, for example, shone blue at night: an humanimal adaptation.

See humanimale


A composite form that permits a larger discourse on the hybrid form. It's also a body that allows you to desire different things than you would do, normally. An invented construction, the humanimal is half you, half something else. Even an angel can be feral. I want a dark angel, and that is why I write books. That is why I expel the fur from the skin, so that the skinned body has a textured aura. If you touch it, it is yours. This is also a definition of capture. The humanimal is a fundamentally undomesticated or untrained figure.

Vladimir Nabakov, Brian Evenson, Rilke, Marguerite Duras, and so on. Their books all have humanimals in them. You can tell because faces aren't quite clear, which implies incaution -- in terms of the contact between characters. I am not interested in the narrator. I am not interested in the writer. I am interested in the figure that is made, deep in writing. In this sense, writing is the forest I walk out of, drenched in the smell of animals. I'm serious. Once, in Dharamsala, a monk ran past us on the steep stone stairs going down to McCleod Ganj. He yelled: "Lion!" And so we turned, and ran, too.

See feral child, poet


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