GMO and Novel “Frankenstein”

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In the novel Frankenstein, Mary Shelley infers that caution must be taken when practicing science and tampering with nature. Even though the book was published in the early nineteenth century it predicted a lot about what occurs in science today. Science has come so far since the 19th century. Innovations in technology, science, medicine, etc. have shaped the way humans function today. Scientists have always been pushing the limits of scientific discovery.

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A genetically modified organism (commonly referred to as GMOs) is an organism that has had its genome changed or altered by genetic engineering. Many countries have made the switch to using GMOs instead of growing everything organically. The United States has been doing this since 1994. Producing and consuming GM food can be hazardous to the environment and one’s own body.

GMOs can be seriously dangerous to your health. An example of this is that a type of modified corn was never intended for human consumption but actually for pig feed. According to certain studies this type of corn has been linked to liver and kidney problems. Some people might also be allergic to GMOs and not even know it since most companies don’t specify they use GMOs They allergies can range from mild symptoms to more serious side effects.“Food allergies are a growing problem in the United States…Some people believe that spike is linked to GM foods” (GMOs: Pros and Cons). Some people can even be seriously allergic to GMOs. GMOs also affect our environment, they are often tested on animals and they alter the way the course of nature works, by contributing to antibiotic resistance. The only benefit of GM food is that it is much easier to produce because the seeds are manipulated to grow larger at a faster rate.

Genetic engineering is the process of altering the structure and nature of genes in human beings and animals. The purpose is to modify DNA in order to benefit an organism. Although it has numerous benefits, people still fear it can change nature. Genetic engineering may increase life span, lower the risk of genetic disease, and make children stronger, smarter, and healthier. It is indeed altering science and nature, though. It also gives the chance of having a genetic engineer make a life-altering, irreversible mistake affecting a person for the rest of their life. The monster explains, “Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change” (Shelly 167). This heavily relates to genetic engineering because many fear genetic engineering and are not ready for change. It scares a lot of people, even though it has done a lot for families who have dangerous genes they don’t want to pass onto their children.

The production of GM foods and genetic engineering can relate to the novel, Frankenstein. GMOs affect the way nature changes people’s’ food and genetic engineering affects people’s DNA. Similarly, Dr. Victor Frankenstein affects the way human beings are created and how they look and interact with the world. The monster elucidates, “Life, although it may only be an accumulation of anguish, is dear to me, and I will defend it” (Shelly 114). This is insight on how The Monster feels. In turn this relates to GM food because it shows how messing with nature can have serious consequences and can affect the environment and other people.

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