>it goes out of its way to not be about how Earth just makes
>people into badasses by the galactic reckoning, but instead about how
>eugenics Works And Is Good Actually.
This reminds me that the overarching plotline in the Lensman books is about a successful galactic eugenics program. You can't even call it subtext, because it is explicitly the point of the Arisians' Lensman project. It even has a blithely executed human supremacist twist, becase the Arisians were doing the same thing to several different species, and got one individual in each of three of them as far as Second Stage Lensman status--but only the human makes it all the way to the end, marries the right female, and sires the first of the new superspecies the Arisians have been trying to create the whole time.
The really striking thing about that in retrospect is that, although the series began in the 1930s when eugenicist views were still relatively mainstream, the later books that pay off that plotline were first serialized during World War II, and the last volume, Children of the Lens, started coming out in 1947. I would have thought that by then, American editors would have been a bit leery of a story that comes right out and presents its main characters as Superior Beings Created By Breeding the Best Humans Together, but then again, we are talking about John W. Campbell here.
Benjamin D. Hutchins, Co-Founder, Editor-in-Chief, & Forum Mod
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