Clones: Humans or Science Project in Kazuo

Clones: Humans or Science Project in Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go
The novel Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro, is set in England of the 1990s in an
imaginary boarding school named Hailsham. The novel primarily focuses on the
use of human clones as ”donors”. In other words, the students of this boarding
school are human clones who are nurtured to ”donate” their bodily organs to
”real human”. Among these students, there are three human clones who grow up
together. Throughout the novel, they develop their relationship and become close
friends, despite having different personalities. They each have different
approaches to their fate.
They are brought up to believe that the only purpose of their life is to donate
their important organs until they are ”complete”. In other words, they are
considered to be ”science projects” rather than humans. This fact is proven by the
attitudes of others, such as their ”guardians”, who are their teachers and
instructors at the school, and the woman, who is called ”Madame”. This woman
visits Hailsham from time to time and collects the artworks of the students, but by
showing a cold attitude she leads the students to think that she may afraid of
The present essay depicts how Ishiguro tries to prove that the clones are more
than mere ”objects” and, therefore, that it is immoral to use them as objects. He
argues this throughout the novel by depicting the friendship which is made
between the narrator Kathy and her friends Tommy and Ruth. The essay considers
their friendship as it develops throughout the novel. It takes on one form in
Hailsham, where they spend their childhood. Later, in the Cottages the three
friends experience a different sort of relationship. Finally, their relationship
changes once again in the last part, when the friends are all facing their
predestined fate of donating their organs until they are ”complete”.
Additionally, although they are aware of their predestined purpose in life, they
have emotions and they fall in love. They have wishes too, and they wish they
could live longer to be with their lovers. They have ambitions and dreams. In other
words, they seek another purpose for their life rather than surrender themselves
easily to their planned destiny.

This discussion places an emphasis on the relationship between Kathy, Tommy,
Ruth who are depicted like ”real humans”. They have their own identities and seek
validation for these identities.
Keywords: Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go, Hailsham, cloning, friendship,
science project, human


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