The Multiple Elements in Never Let Me Go, a Novel by Kazuo Ishiguro

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The novel Never Let Me Go, by Ishiguro contains various elements which contribute to the creation of a post-human science fiction environment. The first element that is presented is that they have no choice in their lives. Miss Lucy says, “None of you will be working in supermarkets as I heard some of you planning the other day. Your lives are set out for you. You’ll become adults, then before you’re old, before you’re even middle-aged, you’ll start to donate your vital organs” (Ishiguro 81).

She tells the students gathered before her that they are raised to donate their organs, and have no say in determining their own future. This clearly represents science fiction as that does not happen in our current society. The next element is that the students at Hailsham are separated from the rest of the world, and also cannot have babies. 

Miss Emily had told the students that “We had to be extremely careful about having sex in the outside world, especially with people who weren’t students, because out there sex meant all sorts of things” (Ishiguro 84).

This shows not only that the students were not a part of the “outside world”, but also that it was impossible for any of them to have children; both of which represent elements of science fiction. Another element of science fiction in Never Let Me Go is the idea that they all have “possibles”, or the original model of themselves. It is said, “Since each of us was copied at some point from a normal person, there must be, in for each of us, somewhere out there, a model getting on with his or her life” (Ishiguro 139).

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This suggests that the students at Hailsham are some sort of clones, and therefore were modeled from a real person. 

The students somewhat believed that if they found their “Possible” it would give them some sort of insight into their own futures. Another element is the collecting of the students’ artwork in the galleries at Hailsham. Miss Emily says, “We took away your art because we thought it would revel your souls. Or to put it more finely, we did it to prove you had souls at all” (Ishiguro 260). She says that at school the students were forced to create artwork in order to provide them with evidence that the students had souls. Many elements are used in Never Let Me Go, by Ishiguro, to create a post-human science fiction novel.

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The Multiple Elements in Never Let Me Go, a Novel by Kazuo Ishiguro. (2021, Dec 27). Retrieved from

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