Conversation 42: Hypotheses about the directorate of internalized characters in animals

By Prof. Levine & Dr. Salganik


Let us recall first that in the model we propose for the "self", one must first differentiate between the primary self, which is actually the basic biological core consisting of a number of innate structures and which is subject to development during life. and the "social self" [consisting of "secondary selves"], which is a structure that develops during a person's exposure to social influence, and consists of internalizations of figures significant to a person, originating either from external groups or from imaginary groups (related, for example, in the form of a story, from a myth, from a movie, etc.) that were having a considerable effect on the person). The "secondary selves" included in the "social self" include 1] the variety of representations of the "Me" that originate from attitudes and feelings towards the self and its representations in different periods of life 2] the representations of internalized figures that often originate from significant figures that the person is exposed to during his life but as mentioned may also be imaginary characters represented in books, films, etc. that have had a considerable influence on man. 3] internalized representations of the "subculture" [subculture refers to social influences in the milieu [environment] in which the person lives and are not necessarily related to a specific person].


Board of Directors: Photographed in courtesy of Shimshony Sarit

We call the social self metaphorically the "directory of characters" or more specifically the "directory of internalized characters." We note that, as we mentioned before, in this board there is usually a hierarchy in which there are more influential and dominant figures that we metaphorically called "Dictator Self or Selves) or the internalized dictators" and these set the tone and even impose censorship on content, attitudes and behaviors that cannot be contained in the board of figures. We note that the person as a whole is not aware of the influence of the board of characters and recognizes the influence as coming from from himself and his own will and positions.

We will also note that as a rule the board of characters is very dynamic and there are constant struggles and power relations between the introverted characters that make it up over the positions that will be expressed when the internal dictator or dictators dictate the tone. Finally, we assume the existence of another internalized group that we will call the enemy group, the individuals represented in it are seen as enemies and the internal dictator imposes censorship on their inclusion in the board of directors.

The question arises as to whether in certain animals there is a minimal, partial, and perhaps more than that representation of such an internalized board of directors of members of their species and what are its characteristics?

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