It's present-day Earth. (The iPhone X has just been released, millenials love avocados, global politics are reliably unreliable, etc.) However, a race of 20cm-tall humanoids also exists on the planet. They're familiar with human culture, given that they've been living in our attics and using up all our free data, but humans didn't know that they existed.

These creatures have similar morals/drives/characters as humans, although they haven't had the same technology available to them, given that they've been living in hiding. They know how Facebook works, some of them are adept at coding, maybe a few of them post on StackExchange, but things have been either theoretical or pretty small-scale for them.

Question is, once we've all got over the shock of their existence, how will our societies coexist? Or, more fully, what could each society offer the other that makes coexistence worth their while?

(If it helps with visualisation, imagine a race something like the Borrowers, Wombles of Wimbledon, or house brownies...)


It's kind of irrelevant how humans and Minis come to coexist (I'm imagining Minis are discovered, and decide to live alongside humans peacefully rather than be exterminated by the more powerful Bigs), but I wonder what each society could offer the other to make their society feasible.

Perhaps the Minis would be really good at coding and needlework? Or their tiny size could make them really good neurosurgeons? And then humans could offer building skills, heavy lifting, mass-produced items, physical security..?

Basically, what else could they offer each other? I'd love some legitimate reasons for why their societies would actually want to live in harmony!


Physically, they're pretty much the same as humans (apart from size). They probably have better night vision, given that they're fairly reclusive - but you might also have some in abandoned warehouses/unpopulated places/etc. that have adapted to daylight more. They tend to recycle things as their communities are fairly small and fairly static, so they're quite ingenious and have good practical skills. They're also used to urban environments, and have access to technology in people's homes, so can be pretty adept with computers/phones/etc. They're fairly sociable, just a bit wary of the Bigs at first!


closed as too broad by L.Dutch, JBH, Secespitus, Aify, MichaelK Sep 14 '17 at 8:58

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ Honestly, exploring the fallout from the discovery of these creatures would be pretty exciting. $\endgroup$ – Tim Sep 14 '17 at 1:52
  • $\begingroup$ Are you kidding me? It's the Littles! $\endgroup$ – can-ned_food Sep 14 '17 at 2:15
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    $\begingroup$ Possible duplicate of Can my giants and humans coexist? $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch Sep 14 '17 at 5:11
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    $\begingroup$ See Can my giants and humans coexist? (which itself was closed as too broad) $\endgroup$ – a CVn Sep 15 '17 at 8:47
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    $\begingroup$ I find this question interesting. The movie Zootopia illustrated a city where critters of many sizes coexisted. For example the mass transit system has doors for different sized critters. A story like could show how one group ends up being the default even when possibly they are no longer the majority. $\endgroup$ – Mazel Sep 15 '17 at 20:10

Their biggest problem would be that humans would not be happy to find that other people had been living in their homes uninvited and rent-free. It would be no different to discovering that a regular human had been living in your attic without your knowledge. They are trespassing; they are probably stealing our stuff and there is a distinctly creepy invasion of privacy.

Now that we know about them, most people would take steps to get rid of them. The minis would need to show that they had some sort of legal right to live in the house or they would need to convince humans that they performed some necessary role in the home. Maybe the fact that they’ve been watching us in private all our lives would put them in a position to blackmail their way to being allowed to stay.

Some humans would side with the minis and governments would probably pass minis-rights laws giving them the right to live in their homes and mandating that public facilities are made accessible to minis. This is likely to cause some resentment against them.

Some minis would integrate well into human society; others would demand a return the traditional old ways of secret living.

It would not be long before the first human / mini marriage.


And why would Borrowers, Indian in the cupboard and Toy Soldiers need to get out of the, literally, closet? What need would they have to uncover themselves at large? Definitely there was earlier some single, rogue tries to make friend with large humans.

What would be their drive to abandon their comfy life of living on somebody else cost. The idea behind the borrowers is that it's easier to steal a smartphone and use is as big flat tv instead of working and paying for it.


This is from my point of view as a geographer. the mini's culture, political system, economy and environment, would all be affected in some way. When a confrontation between two countries/groups/societies occurs, their are several possible results.

  1. B integrates into A and some customs would continue to live.
  2. A consumes B, resulting in no customs being kept.
  3. B grows from A, gaining new traditions and technologies.
  4. B repels A, relations between the two groups are never forged.

These are the main ways groups/societies/countries react to a confrontation. I would say personally the first or second scenario is most likely.

Hopefully this is helpful! I think that cultural geographic is a useful tool in world building and utilising some of the real life scenarios that occur may bring realism to this piece.


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