Human Species May Split into Two: Life Imitates Art Again?

Here’s a zinger to mull over: The BBC has post­ed an arti­cle about a the­o­ry advanced by Oliv­er Cur­ry, an “evo­lu­tion­ary the­o­rist” work­ing out of The Lon­don School of Eco­nom­ics, who sug­gests that human­i­ty may split into two sub-species about 100,000 years down the road. And what we’d be left with is “a genet­ic upper class” rul­ing over “a dim-wit­ted under­class.” This is a sce­nario, of course, that HG Wells laid out in his 1895 clas­sic, The Time Machine (lis­ten to free audio­book on iTunes here). And, if Cur­ry’s the­o­ry holds water, Welles may offer the most extreme exam­ple of sci­ence fic­tion antic­i­pat­ing the shape of the future. Does Cur­ry’s the­o­ry have any­thing to it? We haven’t the fog­gi­est. But does it make for strange­ly com­pelling yet dis­turb­ing read­ing? It sure does.

See our Sci­ence Pod­cast Col­lec­tion as well as our col­lec­tion of Audio­book Pod­casts.

Sub­scribe to our feed

by | Permalink | Comments (2) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Comments (2)
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
  • buddy says:

    I checked the cal­en­dar. It’s not April. What’s going on?

  • Yoder says:

    I have to say it sounds far fetched. One of the most basic prin­ci­ples of pop­u­la­tion genet­ics is that even a very lit­tle inter­breed­ing can pre­vent evo­lu­tion­ary diver­gence. Nat­ur­al selec­tion has to be pret­ty strong to over­come gene flow.

    But — the strongest selec­tive agent on the plan­et right now is arguably Homo sapi­ens, and as emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies allow us to manip­u­late our chil­dren’s genet­ics to suit fash­ion and ambi­tion, maybe we’ll do to our­selves what we’ve already done to St. Bernards and maize.

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.