March 12, 2012

“Yes. The ooloi see great potential in it. So the trade has already been useful. […] Yes. We trade the essence of ourselves. Our genetic material for yours. […] We do what you would call genetic engineering. We know you had begun to do it yourselves a little, but it’s foreign to you. We do it naturally. We must do it. It renews us, enables us to survive as an evolving species instead of specializing ourselves into extinction or stagnation. […] We’re not hierarchical, you see. We never were. But we are powerfully acquisitive. We acquire new life—seek it, investigate it, manipulate it, sort it, use it. We carry the drive to do this in a miniscule cell within a cell—a tiny organelle within every cell of our bodies. Do you understand me?” (Butler 40)

The description of the process of biomimicry and genetic engineering by the ooloi on themselves and humans is characterized as a type of trading. It seems that the ooloi see it as sort of a trade that positively impacts both species involved, and find it to be necessary for survival throughout long amounts of time. This modification is not only a psychological desire on the part of the ooloi as it was for humans, but it is a biological need, and acting upon it fulfills what their bodies have been designed to do.

The inability of humans to do this and become “evolving species” is what has caused their downfall and the ooloi believe that their subsequent arrangement with them will create a new, progressive society. In addition to the human failure in becoming an “evolving species,” the presence of a hierarchical system on Earth is also pointed to as being a degenerative quality of humans. This seems to conflict with the system the ooloi than set up with Lilith and the other human, modifying her in order to make her the leader, and thus, better than the other humans.

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