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August 25, 2017

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Who took the first selfie: A physician?

August 21, 2017


The most famous Selfie at this time is Oscar selfie that twitted more than one million times[1]. By considering the important parts of accepted definition of selfies such as being self-portrait that maybe shared on social networking services [2], we don’t know who invent the first selfie. With some leniency, we can remember Robert Cornelius who took photo from himself[3]. But taking photo from ourselves is not limited to modern era. Before the invention of photography, painting existed in the people’s life[4].


By little more moderation, we can accept self-portraits as selfies in ancient time. There are many self-portraits from great painters that prove the existence of selfies in the past[5][6]! If we accept these portraits as a primitive version of selfies, a series of questions must be answered.

Who was the first selfie drawer?

Who was the first human being tried to show him on media?

The best way for finding answers to these questions is reviewing and reanalyzing cave paintings. Prehistoric human tried to increase his magic power in hunting by making these art pieces. Shamans, the magician of tribes, drew the animals’ figures on the cave walls and ceilings; sang the magic songs for victory and in the time of war, injury and disease. These arts were also magic tools for treating diseases[7].

In conclusion, it seems that these prehistoric medical therapists, unwittingly made primitive form of selfies and share it with others on primitive social network, the walls! Although this idea is not proved yet, I think it is a good point for archeologists and other scientists to start!


[1] http://variety.com/2014/film/news/oscars-ellen-degeneres-breaks-twitter-with-epic-group-selfie-1201124224


[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selfie


[3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Cornelius


[4] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-portrait


[5] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1838787/


[6] http://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/1992-22864-001


[7] onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1525/maq.1995.9.4.02a00030/abstract

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