On the origin of some thoughts

Somewhere around Brescia, Italy, September 9, 2022

This is an unusual posting for my blog, becauseI don’t have a keyboard right now with me. I am traveling through Europe from Romania to Spain and I am dictating this using the Android voice recognition feature, using my smartphone, and–believe it or not–the Vim text editor.

So in this weird, unusual, posting I would like to discuss with you, my readers, about the unlearned nature of some science fiction ideas, and when I say unlearned I mean things that people assume and that seem not to be learned (taught) anywhere. I will give you someexamples so you can see what I mean.

Let me begin with a usual, very common, sci-fi scenario, where a man–a human, an astronaut–meets some kind of alien civilization. One of the first things they say is “take me to your leader”, and let me ask you, readers, what is the main assumption in this case?

Well, it is that the planet has one leader.

Even though our own planet has multiple leaders–the planet is split into many different individual countries–somehow it seems natural to assume that an alien world will have only one leader. My question is: what is the origins of that thought? Certainly not something that people have seen anywhere and are applying out of some kind of momentum, but instead, in my opinion, itn is an unlearned fact, and an assumption of something that seems more natural, and therefore implemented as such, for example, in sci-fi.

There is yet another instance of this, in the case of clones. Ever since that Scottish scientist cloned that sheep in 1996, cloning has been appearing in sci-fi, TV shows, movies, etc., and it has become commonplace to assume that a clone is a dumb version, an obedient version, of the person cloned. Do you understand? It is easier to assume that a clone is a dumb, obedient version of yourself instead of an equal, a peer, a competitor, and again, I wonder what the origin of that thought is.

Sometimes authors introduce something intelligent into the plot and the clone is indeed an equal, a competitor, for the original person who is cloned, but not always. It seems more natural for the clone to be a dumb, obedient, version of the original character.

What is the origin of that thought?

Please let me know what you think.

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