Category Archives: Gattaca

In Fear of the Coming Dark: Genetics and Humanity

There’s a striking moment in PBS’s “Cracking the Code of Life“ which, for a moment, may seem frightening. We cut to a scene from Gattaca, a 1997 film about something involving genes and astronauts, in which two parents are screening their gametes. They’re well on their way to sacrificing their myriad aspirations on an altar of parenthood, but […] Continue reading

Posted in Brave New World, Fiction, Gattaca, Genetic discrimination, Island of Dr. Moreau, literature, science fantasy, Science Fiction, skipping ahead in the syllabus, unreliable reasoning | Comments Off on In Fear of the Coming Dark: Genetics and Humanity

How much can we change? How much should we change?

In “Cracking the Code,” words such as instruction book, blueprint, and manual are used in order to describe a DNA molecule.  The program repeatedly states that the DNA can be “read,” as if it is some sort of book.  One bioethist, George Annas, refers to the DNA molecule as a future diary because the information […] Continue reading

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Zen and the Art of Genetic Manipulation

All parents want the best for their children. They want them to be safe, happy, and healthy. What if you were able to ensure all of these things for your child through genetic manipulation? The scary part about altering one’s genes, as explored in Gattaca, is not in the prevention of future disease and illness. […] Continue reading

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To alter, or not to alter, that is the question

Through advancements in modern science, the possibility of ‘designer babies’ who have had their genetic makeup artificially selected to ensure certain characteristics or genes is becoming more realistic. Specifically, genetic modification could affect a child’s susceptibility to disease, allow parents to choose a specific gender, determine personality traits, or even establish appearance and IQ. But […] Continue reading

Posted in altruism, Biology, Designer babies, discrimination, Gattaca, gene alteration, genetic ethics, genetic modification | Comments Off on To alter, or not to alter, that is the question

Reflections: Gattaca (1997)

“There is no gene for the human spirit.” This was my first time watching the film Gattaca, and I have to say that I was thoroughly engrossed for all 100 or so minutes.  There were a number of specific things that I enjoyed, including the death and rebirth end scene that strongly reminded me of the opening […] Continue reading

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Genetic Engineering and the Breakdown of the Family

Both Gattaca and Beggars in Spain take place in futuristic societies in which advanced genetic engineering allows for a person’s characteristics to be controlled simply by altering the person’s genes while they are still an embryo. However, the unfortunate result of this is that in both stories, children are generally seen not as a gift to be […] Continue reading

Posted in Beggars in Spain, family, Future, Gattaca, genetic engineering, genetics, in vitro fertilization, Kress, science, Science Fiction | Comments Off on Genetic Engineering and the Breakdown of the Family

The Circle of Life

First, I have to preface this post by saying that the film Gattaca was probably one of my all-time favorites. I could not put a number to where it would fall on any kind of list of mine, but I do know that the more time I spend thinking about it, the more I like […] Continue reading

Posted in Biology, Eugenics, Films, Gattaca, genetic engineering, genetics, Niccol | Comments Off on The Circle of Life

Designer Babies Are All the Rage

(yes, this is for B3. I just posted early!) A/N: Mild spoilers for “Gattaca” below! I went into Gattaca knowing absolutely nothing about the movie other than the fact that it starred Jude Law and Uma Thurman (if one is going to star in a futuristic Sci-Fi movie, what better name than “Uma Thurman,” am […] Continue reading

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The Homogenization Syndrome

I’ve been wondering, ever since I finished Generosity, why it was that Thassa, the beloved character in the book, annoyed me so much. Is it her constant optimism? The fact that a scientific discovery hinges on her DNA? Or is it simply the fact that she seems to be Powers’s conduit as the manifestation of […] Continue reading

Posted in Brave New World, Gattaca, gene for happiness, generosity, genetic engineering, Oryx and Crake | Comments Off on The Homogenization Syndrome