Type: Literary Analysis
Pages: 4 | Words: 1032
Reading Time: 5 Minutes

John J. Conley’s “Narcissus Cloned” is about the various arguments that surround human cloning. Conley acknowledges that human cloning is fraught with various ethical and political issues that should be acknowledged not only by scholars and other experts in the field but the public in general. According to Conley, a primary issue regarding debates about human cloning is the limited and shortsighted view of the issue. Many people offer uninformed opinions and perspectives in the debate but they lack logical or rational reasoning to create a sound, analytical and productive debate. Moreover, people who offer their opinions lack the objectivity to view the issue of human cloning from an impartial perspective. In “Narcissus Cloned,” Conley initially discusses the various moral debits surrounding the practice of human cloning and continues to point out the errors or shortcomings of subjective arguments about the issue. Conley offers logical arguments that include the ideas that human cloning is a violation of our regard to human life, and human cloning undermines human diversity and the integrity of human love.

Conley’s arguments revolve around the concept of human life that begins since conception and humanizing qualities of diversity and possessing the capacity to love. According to Conley, human cloning is a violation of our respect towards human life that begins since conception because it disrupts the human life cycle. How we are as human beings are influenced by the qualities that we inherit from our parents and our growth as human beings start from conception. Human cloning, which skips the human life cycle is thus, unnatural, eliminates the process of human growth and development, and other human traits like spiritual or emotional qualities that people exhibit since birth. Conley also argues that human cloning undermines human diversity and the capacity of individuals to love. Based on the idea of human conception, diversity is a natural quality of society such that individuals develop unique and personal spiritual and emotional traits that make them different from others. However, human cloning eliminates diversity because the traits or qualities of clones are predetermined. In terms of human love, Conley argues that human cloning also interferes with the process of procreation, which is an act done by two people in a loving relationship. Aside from Conley’s main arguments against human cloning, he also criticized various arguments that are weak or subjective. The Luddite approach, the thought that cloning is merely scientific research, and the subjectivist approach are all irrational arguments against human cloning because they are one-sided and fail to address the important points about the issue.

Conley established his argument by presenting an expert, well-researched opinion. Conley’s discussion exhibits that of an individual who is knowledgeable about the particular issue, which is being discussed in the literature. Conley shows the extent of his knowledge about human cloning by supporting his claims with facts. For instance, Conley mentions how the field of science views human cloning by mentioning the assumptions and findings of empirical science and genetic research. In addition, Conley cited various reputable sources to support his claims including those from the World Medical Association, Dr. Jack Kevorkian, and The New York Times, among others. Conley also supported his arguments by discussing how the view of human cloning changed over time. After discussing previous findings and arguments about the issue, Conley began to analyze current or ongoing research about cloning. Overall, while the discussion is both a representation of Conley’s point of view and stance regarding human cloning, the author also established the quality and credibility of the literature by utilizing reputable and reliable sources.

Aside from presenting the author’s expert and well-researched opinion about human cloning by utilizing supporting arguments from reputable resources, Conley’s strategy also involved the use of various examples in order to prove his points. The structure of the discussion follows the format of Conley stating an opinion, supporting it with arguments from reputable sources, and then citing examples. To prove Conley’s argument that human cloning disrupts the nature of human growth and development from conception, the author cites how the issue is synonymous to the controversy surrounding abortion. Using abortion as an example, Conley sought to argue that the value and acknowledgment of human life begins from conception. “The acid test of whether we corporately esteem human life, however, is not found primarily in our treatment of powerful adults. Rather, it emerges in our treatment of the vulnerable” (Conley, p. 348). To prove the author’s second point, which is the idea that human cloning undermines human diversity, Conley cited the issue surrounding Down’s Syndrome. Conley applied the same strategy until the second half of the discussion.

Conley organized the discussion using a deductive structure. In the beginning of the literature, Conley talks about the background of the discussion — ethics and politics in human cloning — and continued to criticize the weak arguments surrounding the issue. Conley then proceeded to identify what the discussion would be about — moral debits of human cloning and the weak and subjective arguments about it. Throughout the literature, Conley states overarching points or themes and proceeded to the specifics of those themes by using supporting arguments and then citing specific examples. Based on Conley’s discussion about human cloning, readers could assume that the author is against human cloning and recommends that if people who are against it should expect to gain support, they should establish solid, logical, and founded arguments. Overall, people who are against human cloning would find Conley’s discussion to be strong and rational because the author utilizes reputable sources and tangible and relevant examples to support his arguments. Moreover, Conley wrote a readable and compelling literature about human cloning.

In conclusion, Conley sought to discuss his personal opinion about human cloning by utilizing supporting arguments from various reputable sources. Aside from airing Conley’s opinion about human cloning, his objectives in discussing the issue is to criticize other people’s weak, subjective, and one-sided arguments against human cloning, persuade readers that human cloning is morally wrong, and persuade those who are against it to establish stronger and more rational basis of arguments. To achieve the author’s objectives, Conley utilized reputable sources and a series of tangible examples and structured the discussion using the deductive format.

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