Articles/journals Intersections

The Indian ‘wolf boy’ Dina, walking on all fours

Dina Sanichar from India is one of the many ‘feral’ children growing up and cared for by wolves, panthers, or gazelles, whose story has been described throughout history. He was taken from his wolf family, who were all killed, and he was brought to an orphanage (1872) He was presumably 6 years old, walked on all fours and did not communicate with human language. He died twenty years later, probably from lungdisease.

These, and other accounts from feral children, raise many interesting points and questions about

  • the dichotomy between civilization and wilderness
  • which abilities or behaviour make us ‘human’? (e.g. walking upright, human spoken language, etc) Which are deemed animallike, make humans more animallike?

All of these also with repercussion for disabled persons and how they are viewed.

Dina probably never considered himself disabled or felt disabled when living with the wolves. Though he learned (or most likely was forced) to walk upright, “he moved much more ably on all fours”.

LINK on Timeline.com: Literally raised by wolves, this Indian boy was found wandering in the wilderness as a six-year-old, Laura Smith, November 20, 2017.

A quote from the article:

“The orphanage was run by Father Erhardt, a missionary living in India, who noted that though Sanichar “undoubtedly pagal (imbecile or idiotic), still shows signs of reason and sometimes actual shrewdness.””

Dina Sanichar, in 1875, three years after his ‘discovery’ (Wikimedia).
B&W blurry photo, young man with moustache, dark vest, light striped trousers, sitting on stairs at a terrace, next to some foliage, in a somewhat cramped position, with his hands on his knees, looking into camera

 

Geertrui Cazaux (Trudi in English). Vegan. Gardener. Wife. Disabled. Writer. Activist. Caretaker. Ex-academic. Wannebee drummer. °1970. Belgium. Vegetarian since mid '90's and vegan since 2010. My main motive has always been the ethical perspective, although I am also inspired by the environmental and health aspects. Writing about veganism, animal rights and ableism on Graswortels.org, Brugesvegan.com, and CripHumanimal.org

0 comments on “The Indian ‘wolf boy’ Dina, walking on all fours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: