Morgan Verble - AHS LIBRARY OF BABEL

stubbornnessuglyBiotechnology

Dec 12, 2012 (4 years and 10 months ago)

308 views

Morgan Verble

December 12
,

2011

AP Honors English IV

Jennings

The Possibilities of a Real
Brave New World


Before society started using science in everyday life
,

it was unnecessary to question it
.

SUPPORT?
But starting in the nineteenth and twentieth
centuries
,

research and discoveries were
starting to emerge in the fields of genetics and biology
.

With new possibilities and
developments
,

come questions concerning
what is
right and
what is
wrong
.

The opportunity of
scientific interference with the hum
an body and mind bring up the ethical matter of whether or
not society
,

and by that humankind
,

would truly profit
.

The

decanting

technologies and science
found in
Brave New World

are possible because there are no ethical influences restricting their
advanc
ement
.

The World State is significantly different from current day society
.

Morals are no
longer the same resulting in different views on principles
.

This paves the way for being able to
produce progressed technologies
.


Before getting into the ethical fre
edom the World State possesses
,

let’s take a look at
some of the technologies used in
Brave New World
.

While teaching the modern fertilization
process to his students
,

the director mentions that eggs
,

which were previously detached from a
surgically remove
d ovary and are already ripened
,

are kept in a liquid with a specific
temperature
,

salinity
,

and viscosity
.

The container in which this substance is enclosed is
immersed into another substance of free swimming spermatozoa
,

which fertilizes each egg
(Huxley 5)
.

Podnsap’s technique helps accelerate the ripening of the eggs
being incubated
.

Similar to cloning is
Bakonovsky’s process
, which
is described as “One egg
,

one embryo
,

one
adult
-

normality
.

But a bokanovskified egg w
ill bud
,

will proliferate
,

will divide
.

From eight to
ninety
-
six buds
,

and every bud will grow into a perfectly formed embryo
,

and every embryo into
a full
-
sized adult
.

Making ninety
-
six human beings grow where only one grew before
.

Progress”
(Huxley 6)
.

T
he technologies described above can be compared to scientific research and
processes currently used in the genetic field
.

As embryologist Joseph Needham puts it:

The biology was perfectly right
,

and Mr
.

Huxley has induced nothing in his book but
what migh
t be regarded as legitimate extrapolations from knowledge and power that we
already have
.

Successful experiments are even now being made in the cultivation of
small mammals in vitro
,

and one of the most horrible of Mr
.

Huxley's predictions
,

the
production
of numerous low
-
grade workers of precisely identical genetic constitution
from one egg
,

is perfectly possible
.

Armadillos
,

parasitic insects
,

and even sea
-
urchins
,

if
treated in the right way
,

do it now
.

(Squier 147)

Needham in confirming that the sciences

used in Brave New World are easily achievable
,

and
with the fact that some animals already do it naturally
,

it is only up to technology to put it in
place
.


Currently
,

research associated with genetics and reproduction is advancing

rapidly
.

Here
are some technologies that are possible today
,

just to mention a few
.

WC/SF
Stem cell
transformation is when stem cells within the body are removed from an embryo and are injected
with foreign DNA
.

The genetically modified cells are replaced in the e
mbryo which is then
inserted into the uterus and brought to term (Drummond 6)
.

Somatic cell genetic modification is
altering the gene composition of cells in the body but not of those cells that will pass the genetic
alteration to future generations (Drumm
ond 18)
.

Artificial parthenogenesis is the technique of
stimulating an egg to produce cell division without the contact of sperm (Squier 41)
.

A very
commonly known technology in the reproduction world is In
-
Vitro which includes the
introduction of foreign
DNA into an oocyte (unfertilized ovum) or into one of the pro
-
nuclei of
the newly fertilized ovum
.

The genetically modified embryo is then introduced into the uterus
(Drummond 5)
.

With such complex and vivid possibilities currently in advancement
,

one migh
t
wonder why society hasn’t advanced to such a state as in
Brave New World
.


It isn’t that technology cannot advance; it is that our world doesn’t permit it
.

Some say
Huxley
over imagined WC
the technologies used in
Brave New World
,

but it can be assumed t
hat
his associations with top biologists
,

including his brother Julian Huxley
,

gave him insight on the
advances that were already being conducted in the
scientific world

(Meckier 104)
.

None

of the
advancements
went

anywhere
,C though
,

at least for an
extended time
,

due to moral and ethical
restrictions

set by society
.

In 1934
, Gregory Pincus mastered In
-
Vitro on monkeys and by 1939
surrogacy in rabbits; and even though they w
ere

mastered
,

none of these processes came close to
be
ing
researched or perfor
med on humans until the early 1980s (Cripps 11) and even then
,

and
still now
,

people question whether it is right or not
.

Included in a list of “medical interventions
that are considered illicit in official Roman Catholic teaching
,

but which gain widesprea
d
approval within all other Chrisitian denominations” is IVF (Drummond 197)
.

It is believed that it
is a direct attack on innocent human lives
.

NEW PAR.? While t
he

decanting pro
cesses
mentioned in
Brave New World

are easily obtainable
,

given that most rese
arch conducted
now
is
closely related to
them
,

the research cannot advance to reach the same magnitude as those
processes in the World State
.

For example
,

human cloning entails a technique called somatic cell
nuclear transfer “in which a patient
-
specific diploid human cell is fused with an enucleated
mature egg to develop a blastocyst
-
stage embryo that is genetically identical to the patient cell
donor” (Hy
un 34)
.

If more research would be able to be conducted
,

it could easily advance to
Bakonovsky’s process
.

The concern that could limit research from progressing is “either on
moral grounds or to protect the welfare of the child to be born
.

Concern has been
so universal
that an international instrument condemning it
,

the UNESCO Declaration on the Human Genome
and Human Rights (1997)
,

was approved by 186 nations” (Skene 234)
.

Because scientific
research concerning human life is feared on ethical stand points
,

it eliminates any possibilities of
achieving processes closely related to
Brave New World
.

Morals and ethics are essentially eliminated in the World State
.

For every problem there
is a solution and since the World State is built on community
,

identity
,

and

stability
,

the
problems we face in today’s world are not common in
Brave New World

(Huxley 43)
.

Even in
the book there is a
clear
sign of unhappiness due to the lack of child bearing but as there is
something to fix everything
,

all Fanny
,

the one who is e
xperiencing the unhappiness
,

has to do is
take a pregnancy substitute and then she is all better (Huxley 38)
.

Soma also renders the ability
to always feel okay
,

to always have a way to be happy
.

Mustapha Mond explains it as
“Christianity without tears” (Hu
xley 238)
.

In the World State ethics are not needed
,

and in this
instance it is because of the technological advancement of Soma and a pregnancy substitute
.

But
how are we supposed to get to that technological advancement if you can only get there without
ethics? It is a never ending cycle
.


The reason we are not to the advancement of
Brave New World

is because ethics
are
inhibiting the research and growth of such procedures
.

In
Brave New World

the jump from B
.
F
.

to A
.
F
.
,

or the jump from ethic based to science based
,

was never explained
,

meaning that
maybe the jump is unattainable
.

It is impossible to eliminate the ethics and morals our world
acquires
,

resulting in the impossibility to advance scientifically to the point
shown in the World
State
.

It can be said that ethics and the science described in
Brave New World

are incompossible
.







Works Cited

Cripps
,

Yvonne
.

"The Art and Science of Genetic Modification: Re
-
Engineering Patent Law and
Constitutional Orthodoxies
.
"
Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies
.

11
.
1 (2004): 1
-
30
.

Drummond
,

Celia
.

Brace New World? Theology
,

Ethics
,

and the Human Genome
.

London: T &
T Clark International
,

2003
.

Print
.

Huxley
,

Aldous
.

Brave New World
.

New York: Harper Collins
,

1946
.

Print
.

Hyun
,

Insoo
.

"Human Resarch Cloning
,

Embryos
,

and Embryo
-
Like Artifacts
.
"
Hastings Center
Report

36
.
5 (2006): 34
-
41
.


Meckier
,

Jerome
.

Critical Essays on Aldous Huxley
.

New York: G
.
K
.

Hall & Co
.
,

1996
.

Print
.

Skene
,

Loane
.

"Recent Developments in Stem Cell Research: Social
,

Ethical
,

and Legal Issues
for the Future
.
"
Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies
.

17
.
2 (2010): 211
-
44
.

Squier
,

Susan Merrill
.

Babies in Bottles: Twentieth
-
Century Visions of Reproductive
Technology
.

Ne
w Brunswick: Rutgers University Press
,

1994
.

Print
.


MORGAN: Some good ideas here and nice research to reveal the state of
contemporary science in relation to BNW. For ideas, one oversight
should be addressed. Your argument is that because of the ethics

we
have today, the science won’t be applied. But ethical standards can and
do change. The oversight is when you suggest we don’t know how the
World State adopted the ethical standards that would allow their
application of science, but we do know how thi
s happened. Check
chapter 3. This may seem like a minor detail but it’s actually a game
changer because you may have to make the case the historical
conditions that led to the change in BNW are impossible or unlikely.
Worth a revisit.