Davis’s “Constructing Normalcy”

Throughout the passage, Davis
illustrates the concept and idea of “normalcy.” Toward the end of the 18th
century, this concept was introduced and considered. Davis defines normal as “constituting,
conforming to, not deviating or different from, the common type or standard,
regular, usual.” This idea of “normal” led people to view anyone who is not
normal to be considered disabled.  He argues
the point that throughout history, the “normal” became the “ideal” for society.
The outcome was people started to compare themselves to a “normal person” rather
than to the Gods.  As a representation of
an “ideal” body, the Greek mythology was strongly correlated to this idea. Davis
explains the idea of the eugenicists, a group of scientists suggesting ways to
help improve the human race. In addition, Davis presents the study of
statistics to show how a concept of normalcy causes abnormalities or extremes. While
considering traits on the bell curve, the left side are the traits that are “inferior”
to the norm while the right side are the traits are “superior” to the norm. Moving
towards the right of the bell curve represented that a new normal would occur,
for the betterment and advancement of the human race. In conclusion, this
reading opened my eyes to perceive normalcy in a whole new level.

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Wilson’s “Writing the Genetic Body-Text”

In Rewriting the Genetic Body-Text, Wilson examines the importance of
genetics, by collaborating the role of the Human Genome Project. Along with the
support of Francis S. Collins, the project’s goal was to “‘uncover the
hereditary factors in virtually every disease’ to make that information
available for the prevention and cure of those diseases.” Wilson focuses on
society and the negative constructions of disability by acknowledging them as a
“genetic Other.” He continues to explain how the perspective of disability can
cause errors in the genetic that result in further disease and disability. Wilson
introduces the idea of the “all-powerful gene” and its significance towards the
evolution of diseases. Despite Wilson’s argument, this perspective relates
strongly to plot of Gattaca. As people
were genetically engineered there were known as “invalids” such as in reference
to Wilson’s argument of the “genetic Other.”

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