I’d never stopped to consider that anthropomorphism and dehumanisation are two sides of the same coin. At least, that’s what I carried away from this article at Phys Org.
Perceiving or bestowing humanity on non-human things as we interact with them has always seemed sensible to me. It brings the unknowable (like storm and earthquake gods) into the realm of “I can deal with this”. Anthropomorphism of animals and plants and machines is a friendly habit.
But dehumanisation, making people lesser so we can justify nastiness toward them, that is horrible.
So is the issue (positive or negative) psychological (as the article suggests) or is it a power strategy?