Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Dreamers, Visionaries, and Revolutionaries in the Life Sciences$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Oren Harman and Michael R. Dietrich

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780226569871

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226570075.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 27 July 2021

Neanderthals in Space

Neanderthals in Space

George Church’s Modest Steps Toward Possible Futures

(p.143) 9 Neanderthals in Space
Dreamers, Visionaries, and Revolutionaries in the Life Sciences

Luis Campos

University of Chicago Press

Harvard synthetic biologist George Church has long envisioned possible futures for his field. With the publication of his Regenesis: How Synthetic Biology Will Reinvent Nature and Ourselves in 2012, however, Church dreamt up the futuristic, and yet atavistic, next step: the cloning of Neanderthals. Such efforts would enable us to recover and understand the nature of "true human diversity," he noted. All that would be needed was a "surrogate mother chimp—or... an extremely adventurous human female.” Such resurrected Neanderthals might "create a new neo-Neanderthal culture and become a political force." What’s more, this "modest step" could be an important next step in the human colonization of the universe, helping to "get at least some of our genomes and cultures off of this planet.” This chapter takes a critical look at the dark side of visionary innovation in biology, exploring the routes to path breaking science while highlighting how dreams may lead to nightmares.

Keywords:   George Church, cloning, Neanderthals, visionary innovation, Regenesis, human colonization

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.