The question of whether reproduction is still a morally responsible thing to do has been a highly debated topic which has recently even expanded onto the mainstream discourse. The predominant approaches we’ve seen are firstly the assumption that the earth is overpopulated by humans and that humans should induce population decline by simply having fewer kids. This mindset is popular, especially among younger, liberal western audiences. On the other hand, many deny the current problems resulting from too densely populated areas and the mismanagement of resources. Conservatives mostly believe that overpopulation and even climate change are myths created to pacify and scare the population. Their desire to form an opposition and to guarantee an advantage to their associated group fuels the rejection of such problems. Lastly, the most rational and humane approach comes with the realization that there are enough resources for even more humans, but current systems favor an uneven distribution that gives superficial advantages to those few hoarded resources. The novel Ghost Species represents a fourth approach to this conflict through the character Davis. Davis believes that reshaping the natural balance will secure a future for humanity. He reappropriates many aspects of the aforementioned views, but they ultimately get warped by his narcissistic and megalomaniac personality. He believes in human-made climate change, but his snooty nature also leads him to believe that he’s able to manipulate and control nature. I believe he also sees himself as a philanthropic person that uses the resources available to him for what he deems the greater good. His logic is flawed though. He sees how humans destroyed micro and macro systems through pollution resulting in changed parameters, interspecies relationships, and population numbers. He thinks he’s not only able to reverse this process but to improve the now damaged systems by inserting new species into them and even emulating natural selection.
Now let’s take a look at how Davis tries to achieve the goals that his twisted ideology established for him. He tries creating new more effective ecosystems to combat the declining state of the earth and the resulting end of the human species. He does this by resurrecting extinct species. Most importantly for us, the Homo Neanderthalensis depicted by the neanderthal Eve. The end of the book goes to show that he not just failed to succeed with his plan to conserve the modern human world but also possibly created a new apex species that are better adapted for the new harsh world to come.
Him creating life is immoral because he doesn’t create Eve so that she can flourish but to help his own species. Unborn life in general is never able to consent to its own creation. Eve is to be born into a specifically non-sustainable world as an experiment to regain balance. Davis doesn’t intend for her to become a being but only to deliver harmony to humankind. Like Kate who refuses to have children because she was born into an inappropriate environment, Davis also should refuse to bring life into a dying world. Eve is unable to follow her predetermined path which leaves her stranded in an uncertain world. He bans himself and the whole world from a livable future by seeking to bring back the past. Davis didn´t succeed and now the future lies in the hands of Eve.
The thoughts and actions of Davis who thinks of humans as the superior race, that together conquered the need for a god, ironically dooms humanity for an apocalypse and gives rise to a world beyond his imagination.