Before this week, I was not aware of how much art occurs in the biotech world and I am extremely fascinated and also a bit morally challenged. I always felt that genetic modification that is used to produce wide scale profit, like Monsanto’s products, override the benefits that these experiments offer. I am also fearful of recycled hegemonic genetics to change natural culture.
I was always bothered by the implications that genetic modification may have on the claims made by Social Darwinism, and how genetic cleansing may facilitate the production of organisms without “undesired genes” as George Gessert used in his experimentations with the Iris flowers. The idea that a set of genes may determine the success of an organism in an environment would ultimately create the option for people to use historical biases in justification of modifying genes.
However, I do believe that humans should have ultimate creative freedom. I guess we could only hope that there are more progressive consequences than destructive ones. I thought Alba the glowing bunny was really interesting and suggestive of medical advancements under careful and ethical standards. It amazes me how much we are capable of doing at this early point of our technological era. Just recently, scientists grew a human embryo in a lab for two weeks. The immediate question is what kind of genes was used in that embryo’s DNA.
At the same time, I agree that further delving into biotech would bring advances in medicine. For example, Google proposes an injected eye mechanism that would essentially make a computerized “eye” but also helps people with issues that affect vision.
I'm inclined to follow the progression of biotech and art for the years to come and take one of the lessons of this topic away that 'anything is possible' and use it for my future creations.
Dickens, Peter. Social Darwinism: Linking Evolutionary Thought to Social Theory. Buckingham: Open UP, 2000. Web. <https://books.google.com/books?id=kCe5AAAAIAAJ&q=social+darwinism&dq=social+darwinism&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwienqHamszMAhVJ6WMKHSk-AgcQ6AEIPjAG>.
"Human Embryo Grown in Lab : DNews." DNews. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2016. <http://news.discovery.com/tech/biotechnology/human-embryo-grown-in-lab-160505.htm>.
Uconlineprogram. "5 BioArt Pt5." YouTube. YouTube, 17 May 2012. Web. 09 May 2016. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?list=PL9DBF43664EAC8BC7&v=3EpD3np1S2g>.
"New Google Device Injected Into Eyeball : DNews." DNews. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2016. <http://news.discovery.com/tech/biotechnology/new-google-device-injected-into-eyeball-160429.htm>.
"Products." Biotechnology. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2016. <http://www.monsanto.com/products/pages/biotechnology.aspx>.