England football team entertain themselves with a card game called Wolf

This is a nice mixture of animals and humans in a current context as the drama of the football World Cup is currently being played out in Qatar.

The England team is staying at a high-quality beachfront hotel in Souq Al-Wakra, Doha. Back in the day, when Paul Gascoigne was playing for the England team, during a night out in Hong Kong before Euro 96 he led them in a notorious “dentist chair” party. It involved players plying each other with drink. Gascoigne went on to become a devastated alcoholic as most of us know.

Speciesism against the wolf
Speciesism against the wolf. Image: photo: Image by Elias from Pixabay with words by MikeB. Click it for a bigger version.

This England team are far more abstemious and sensible. They play a card game which helps to build team bonding called Wolf. It is also known as Werewolves. The game requires deceit and strategic thinking.

And this is the animal context which I have to get to on this website. In this game, wolves are branded as deceitful whereas the villagers appear to be relatively innocent.

The game pits a small, informed group, the wolves, against an uninformed majority, the villagers.

The midfielder, Declan Rice, 23, said: “it’s about being the best liar. The villagers have got to sniff out the wolves, and the wolves have got to lie and tell everyone why they are not a wolf. There is a lot of teamwork, ganging up”.

The team captain, Harry Kane, said: “There are about 16 or 17 of us who play Wolf, and it is a great way to kill some time. It also helps with team bonding.”

It is a role-play card game and employs deduction. It was created by a Russian psychology student, Dmitry Davidoff in 1986.

I’ve just written an article about speciesism which as you probably know is a form of what I would call ‘animal racism’ in which some species are denigrated while other species are praised. It is categorising animals such as the rat as being vermin and a pest while the puppy is a cute companion animal.

The card game Wolf is based on speciesism because the wolf is unfairly characterised as being a liar meaning devious, sly and wily.

That is the universal perception of the wolf. It’s ironic because the domestic dog’s ancestor is the grey wolf so in characterising the wolf in this way, we are indirectly denigrating the domestic dog.

Looking at the personality of the wolf more scientifically, they are described as being highly intelligent, caring, playful and above all devoted to family. And it is believed that only a few other species exhibit these sorts of positive traits. Wolves educate their young and take care of their injured and live in family groups.

They are described as being intensely ambitious and never shy from hard work while being socially adept. I am sure that you can see the stark juxtaposition of the real personality of the wolf, full of positive traits, set against the perception of many and as reinforced in this card game.

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Speciesism - 'them and us' | Cruelty - always shameful
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At heart this site is about ANTHROPOCENTRISM meaning a human-centric world.

Post Category: Wolf