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Biopunk Dystopias Genetic Engineering, Society and Science Fiction$
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Lars Schmeink

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781781383766

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781383766.001.0001

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Science, Family, and the Monstrous Progeny

Science, Family, and the Monstrous Progeny

(p.119) 4 Science, Family, and the Monstrous Progeny
Biopunk Dystopias Genetic Engineering, Society and Science Fiction

Lars Schmeink

Liverpool University Press

Chapter 4 reflects on the creation of the posthuman, concentrating on the genetic manufacture of life in Vincenzo Natali's film Splice (2009). In shifting the medium of the discussion, the more private perspectives of posthuman creation and especially the creature itself are foregrounded by foregoing the larger, social discussion of the consequences provided in chapter 3. Instead, the chapter analyzes liquid modern realities and the loss of stability in its personal dimension, such as love, sex, and procreation. The film, as a biopunk adaptation of the classic Frankenstein-story, makes elaborate use of the metaphor of the monstrous to characterize contemporary society and its desire to liquefy personal bonds and relations. The posthuman becomes monstrous allegory for the liquid modern wish to forego social commitment, especially and most frighteningly reflected in concepts of love and motherhood, where the film warns about the interpersonal consequences of relegating procreation to science and extracting it from stable, secure social relations.

Keywords:   Xenogenesis, Splice, Vincenzo Natali, Genetic engineering, Frankenstein, Monstrous, Teratology

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