Category Archives: evolution

Leaping Across Evolutionary Niches in The Windup Girl

In his science fiction novel The Windup Girl, Paolo Bacigalupi imagines a world in which certain types of genetic information have become scarce commodities, tracked down by the intrigues of global companies and hoarded in top-security seedbanks. Genet… Continue reading

Posted in Darwin, evolution, genetics, niche, Origin of Species, Paolo Bacigalupi, Science Fiction, The Windup Girl | Comments Off on Leaping Across Evolutionary Niches in The Windup Girl

Evolving the Human Successor: Imperfect Perfection in Oryx and Crake

“These are floor models. They represent the art of the possible,” explains Crake to a skeptical Jimmy as Jimmy is introduced to the life-blood of the Paradice Project (Atwood 305). The Crakers are human-animal splices that have been created by Crak… Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, Atwood, Atwood, Margaret, Darwin, evolution, Idol, Margaret Atwood, Religion, Science Fiction, violence | Comments Off on Evolving the Human Successor: Imperfect Perfection in Oryx and Crake

Flashing a Glimpse of the Underworld

At a crucial turning point in H. G. Wells’ The Time Machine (1895), the time traveler, having descended one of the Morlock wells “ill equipped” and “even without enough matches,” wishes he had brought, not a torch or a weapon, but a camera: Continue reading

Posted in evolution, flash photography, H.G. Wells, history of science, Jacob Riis, Science Fiction, The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Time Machine, Wells, H. G. | Comments Off on Flashing a Glimpse of the Underworld

Recuperating Darwin: Is there anything left to offer?

Put frankly, I am perhaps a poor candidate to write a blog post addressing Darwin. Upon reading On the Origin of Species, I felt just as unwilling to recuperate and entertain Darwin’s theories of natural selection and evolution as I thought I would. … Continue reading

Posted in 19th Century, critique, Darwin, disability, evolution, Gender studies, transgender | Comments Off on Recuperating Darwin: Is there anything left to offer?

Evolution in Art?

Last night around midnight, a friend and I went for a walk through Vanderbilt’s campus with the intention of examining some of Vandy’s infamous statues. I typically rush past these art works on my way to coffee classes and meetings, so with our lei… Continue reading

Posted in charles darwin, evolution, evolution of technology, history of science, Nancy DuPont Reynolds, sculpture, the origin of species, Vanderbilt | Comments Off on Evolution in Art?

Evolutionary Hunger Games: Reading Darwin in the Twenty-First Century

As a Victorianist with a primary interest in the natural sciences and a secondary interest in contemporary speculative fiction, my research and thinking is constantly plagued by the question: how can we use Darwin today? Darwin’s influence on the Vic… Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, Atwood, Margaret, charles darwin, Darwin, evolution, George Levine, Gillian Beer, Hunger Games, Science Fiction, Struggle for Existence, Suzanne Collins, technoscience, Variation | Comments Off on Evolutionary Hunger Games: Reading Darwin in the Twenty-First Century

Creationism vs. Evolution – Today’s Debate

Reading the end of Darwin’s Origin of Species reminded me of the recent debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham about the scientific validity of evolutionary theory. It defies explanation that there are still people who defiantly refuse to accept the validity of evolution. Not only has there been extensive research, but it is the […] Continue reading

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You Have to Consider the Idea that God does not Like You!

Writing this blog post is my pain; this is my burning hand, as is reading and grading it your pain. Even though Brad Pitt can make anything interesting, this scene from “Fight Club” encapsulates an angle not yet considered, and in all probability will not be, except for this blog post, that we do not […] Continue reading

Posted in Adam and Eve, Brad Pitt, Ethics of science, evolution, Films, Posthuman, Religion and genetics, Science and humanities, Science Fiction | Comments Off on You Have to Consider the Idea that God does not Like You!

The Purpose of Pain

Dr. Moreau argues that pain is needless for humans. He says plants and lower animals do not feel pain. Men feel pain but do not need to. We are more intelligent than simple-minded beasts and do not need pain to keep us out of harmful situations. Evolution will eventually phase out pain because it is […] Continue reading

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A World Without Einstein

In the 1997 film, Gattaca, the directors are trying to communicate the dangers of genetic engineering and human-influenced evolution. And while the film is not subtle with its reproach of the implied eugenics movement that is inherent in genetic screening, it really hits its point home with its deleted pre-credits scene. At 8:52 of the […] Continue reading

Posted in art versus science, deleted scenes, Einstein, Ethics of science, Eugenics, evolution, Future, Gattaca, Genetic discrimination, genetic engineering, genetics, human genome project | Comments Off on A World Without Einstein