Monday, 20 May 2013

Connections to Real World Issues: The House of the Scorpion


            The House of the Scorpion is a dystopian novel, placed in the far future. Farmer utilized several big issues that we could relate to. Some are explained in further detail below!

            Cloning: This dystopian book showed the distinctive act of cloning individuals, though it put a twist into why the clones were created. In our present world scientists have been cloning animals for several years, but what about humans? Well, in this novel we learned that the clones were actually created for others to utilize their organs so that the people could live longer lives.  The fact is that organs have not been able to be cloned at this point, but in the near future scientists hope to find a method in which cloning could be used to generate tissues and organs. This novel may not only hint the future technology development, but also brings up the questions of how far should we go. Are cloning humans something that should be done? Wouldn’t clones be real people, and if so what is there purpose, as you should not treat them like filthy animals?

            Power: Looking back to the beginning of grade 8, we learned a lot about the Renaissance. Throughout this unit we discussed that people, more so in the past, valued power, and to gain the power they had to have connections with wealthy and influential families. Now if we relate this concept to The House of the Scorpion we can clearly see that connection. It stated that Benito and Fani were married due to that fact that El Patron wanted to gain more power, including the Nigerian money as greater wealth. Further throughout the novel Steven and Emilia wed as El Patron wanted to have a stronger relationship with the powerful political machine, Senator Mendoza, who ruled the United States. As seen, this shows that El Patron cherished power. Since he controlled Opium and everyone there, his decisions or actions did matter.

            Communism: In Opium, El Patron was portrayed as an absolute ruler. “Opium changed from a no-man’s-land to a real country. And its supreme leader, dictator and führer was Matteo Alacran.” (Farmer 170). Everyone who opposed to him was set so that they no longer posed any threat to the dictator. Although, when Matt arrived in Aztlan, hints of communism began to arise. Communism is an economic or social system in which all property and resources are collectively owned by a classless society and not by individual citizens. When we think back to the factory in which Matt was forced to work, it raised the fact of those children or other individuals who created different resources that where given to a larger class of society who requested them. This showed the statement that people worked long days and long nights, just to receive nothing in return. Not even a thank you from the other people who bought these products that the children created. Now looking at our world, when we think about it, each and every square inch of land in the country belongs to the government that can decide what occurs. For example, almost every Chinese bank is state-owned meaning that the government decides which businesses and individuals get the most satisfactory loans. Just like in the book The House of the Scorpion, communism was the act of system where the higher individuals decided which child got more food based on how much work they did. Although was that always fair when one child may have been bigger and stronger than another?
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References:
A peek at Communism today. (n.d.). AltraPoint. Global truth – Truly global. Alternative point, Alternate point, alternative mind. Retrieved May 10, 2013, from http://altrapoint.com/2011/08/peek-communism-today/
Beam, C. (n.d.). How communist is China, anyway? - Slate Magazine. Politics, Business, Technology, and the Arts - Slate Magazine. Retrieved May 10, 2013, from http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2010/07/how_communist_is_china.html
Cloning Fact Sheet. (n.d.). National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) - Homepage. Retrieved May 9, 2013, from http://www.genome.gov/25020028#al-8
Cloning Fact Sheet. (n.d.). Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Retrieved May 9, 2013, from http://www.ornl.gov/sci/techresources/Human_Genome/elsi/cloning.shtml
Love and Marriage in Renaissance Italy   . (n.d.). WorldandI.com - Your Window to Our Changing World. Retrieved May 10, 2013, from http://www.worldandi.com/subscribers/feature_detail.asp?num=26602


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