The medical classification for people who become attracted to inanimate objects is "objectophilia" or "object-craving."
It's considered an embodiment of affection after clinical sociologists Dr. Amy Marsh discovered it's origin to be related to loneliness. People afflicted with OS's tend to also believe in animism, the belief that all objects have souls, feelings and intelligence.
Recently, there has been an increase in recorded cases of OS.
Dr. Marsh is sceptical that this is a new phenomenon in evolution. In Victor Hugo's The Hunchback of Notre Dame there is a passage that demonstrates OS in a natural state:
Quasimodo loved the church bells, caressing himself against them, talked to them, kissed them, understood them. From the carillon in the steeple of the transept to the great bell over the doorway, they all shared his love and vibrated with pleasure.