Why we love dinosaurs
BY wangxingwei from 21st Century
Published 2018-06-26
US actors Bryce Dallas Howard (left) and Chris Pratt star in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. UNIVERSAL PICTURE

It’s no secret that kids love dinosaurs. Many of them have even gone through what’s called a “dinosaur phase” – a period of time when they can’t stop talking about dinosaurs, can’t sleep without hearing a dinosaur bedtime story, and use a backpack with a dinosaur pattern on it.
众所周知,孩子们都喜欢恐龙。许多孩子甚至还经历过一段“恐龙时期”—— 在那段时间里,他们三句话不离恐龙,不听恐龙的故事就不睡觉,还要背上印有恐龙图案的书包。

Adults may have long grown out of their dinosaur phase, but somehow the appeal is still there.

The proof is in the success of Steven Spielberg’s 1993 film Jurassic Park (《侏罗纪公园》), and every following installment of the series. And in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (《侏罗纪世界2:失落王国》), which was released in Chinese mainland cinemas on June 15, these ancient beasts are taking over the modern world once again.

National Geographic has an explanation behind the animals’ popularity: Dinosaurs are “where science and imagination meet”, which is probably what makes them so appealing, to kids and adults alike.

Dinosaurs are often compared to dragons, but are seen as cooler because they’re real. The huge skeletons in museums prove their existence millions of years ago on the same Earth that we now live on. Meanwhile, new discoveries have been made in different parts of the world that open up a bigger picture of these ancient species. And how they went extinct is also a popular subject of scientific studies.

However, we still seem to know so little about dinosaurs, and have to rely on our imagination when it comes to questions like “How did they live?”, “What did they sound like?” and “How fast could they run?”. It’s this sense of mystery that adds to dinosaurs’ attraction compared to other fierce animals like lions and tigers – animals that can easily be seen in today’s zoos.

But there’s more to this dinosaur appeal.

According to Guardian reporter Brian Switek, humans are fascinated by dinosaurs not just because we’re interested in their history, but also because we’re trying to have a better understanding of human history.

“Dinosaurs can be Hollywood monsters, objects of scientific fascination and everything in between, but at the root of it, our fascination with them stems from wanting to know more about the prehistory we share,” he wrote.

“The dinosaur story is part of our own.”

(Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Luo Sitian)
Installment  续集
Skeletons  骨骼
Rely on  依赖于
Attraction  吸引力
Fascinated  着迷的
Stems from  来源于