Add to GoodReads

Clone Being

Exploring the Psychological and Social Dimensions

Stephen E. Levick

Most people think the risks of reproductive cloning are so high as to make trying to clone a person immoral. Even if the medical risks could be reduced greatly, many believe a clone would still risk great psychological harm, and that the practice of reproductive cloning would also be detrimental to society. Others dismiss these concerns as speculative, and point to the possible good they believe it could do. But we need not wait for the first clone to be born to systematically consider the possible psychological and social ramifications of cloning.

Marshalling psychological and sociological theory and research, and drawing upon extensive clinical experiences as a psychiatrist and psychotherapist, Levick explores the various dimensions of cloning. Clone Being attempts to anticipate possible consequences for a clone, his or her "parents" and family, and society. Psychotherapy case material enlivens and illustrates the book and the reader is helped to identify "clone-like" aspects of his or her own experience and mental life, and of contemporary life. Through this process, the book comes to important conclusions about human nature, including the crucial roles of intimacy, sex, and sexuality for society. The clinical and scientifically grounded insights of this book should help inform the reader's ethical judgments and attitudes about cloning people.
« less more »
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 336Size: 6 1/4 x 9 1/4
978-0-7425-2989-2 • Hardback • December 2003 • $124.00 • (£80.00)
978-0-7425-2990-8 • Paperback • December 2003 • $44.00 • (£29.95)
Stephen E. Levick is clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.
Chapter 1 Preface
Chapter 2 Introduction
Chapter 3 The Identical Twin Model
Chapter 4 The Assisted Reproductive Technologies and Arrangements Model
Chapter 5 The Stepchild Model
Chapter 6 The Adoption Model
Chapter 7 The Parent-Child Resemblance Model
Chapter 8 The Child of the Famous Model
Chapter 9 The Replacement Child Model
Chapter 10 The Namesake Model
Chapter 11 The Models Integrated
Chapter 12 Wider Social and Cultural Implications of Cloning
Chapter 13 Intimacy, Sex, and Sexuality
Chapter 14 Implications for Cloning Ethics and Policy
This scholarly book provides an analysis of cloning that is far wider in scope than any other I know of, presenting in great detail the observed or potential effects of entering a family in a variety of different ways, including through cloning. It provides the first framework for detailed analysis of the ethical, psychological, and social consequences of human reproductive cloning. It should inform discussion of any proposal to produce children by nuclear transfer who are genetically identical twins of another person.
Ian Wilmut, head of the Department of Gene Expression and Development, Roslin Institute, Edinburgh; Times Higher Education

For some time now, we have all been listening to a din of voices on cloning, each offering a different opinion on the genetics and medical aspects, ethics and religious implications. Now at last, thanks to Dr. Levick, we have a full, eloquent, knowing, and deeply humane account of human cloning and its potential for good or ill on the human psyche. In a careful analysis of various models of identity, Levick manages to avoid the mantras of the warring camps to reach his own position with balance, and with sensitivity to the needs of parents and children. This book will be an important addition to the growing literature on this exciting but uncertain new field of medical science.
Jason W. Brown, clinical professor of neurology, NYU Medical Center

In this brilliant and intriguing book, Levick anticipates the psychological and social consequences of human reproductive cloning. Containing a wealth of information drawn from the author's clinical experience and the psychiatric literature, this book is a welcome antidote to the hype and armchair speculation prompted by the prospect of cloning. Facts about identical twins, parent-child resemblance, and what happens when parents seek to replace a dead child are fascinating in their own right, and provide useful analogies for the implications of human cloning.
Ruth Macklin, Dr. Shoshanah Trachtenberg Frackman Faculty Scholar in Biomedical Ethics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

It will be a long time before we have actual empirical research on human clones. In Clone Being, Stephen Levick gives us the next best thing. His work may well stand as the blueprint for the kind of genuinely psychologically informed reasoning upon which we will need to depend when cloning becomes a reality. This is an extremely intriguing and important book.
Rogers Smith, Christopher H. Browne Professor of Political Science, University of Pennsylvania

Clone Being is a deeply probing, predictive, and informative examination of a topic about which at present there are still mostly fears, dreams, and hopes. If Dr. Frankenstein had an opportunity to read Dr. Levick's book he might have been able to avoid the mistakes that he made!
J. Alexis Burland, M.D., distinguished life member of the American Psychiatric Association and training/supervising psychoanalyst at the Psychoanalytic C

This is a thought provoking and well argued book about the possible psychological and social well-being of cloned beings.
Bulletin of Medical Ethics

Stephen Levick has written a uniquely thought-provoking treatment of the possible psychological and social consequences of reproductive cloning. Regardless of one's stance on this current controversy, his book will be a most fascinating and informative journey.
Dr. Nancy Segal, author of Entwined Lives: Twins and What They Tell Us About Human Behavior; professor of psychology, California State Univ

Although human clones do not exist as yet, this well-written, thought-provoking book also covers current issues, such as ethics and sexuality, which are applicable to the psychological development of all humans. Recommended.

Human clones are bound to have psychological problems, or at least be at great risk of them. So argues Stephen E. Levick, a clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, in his new book, Clone Being: Exploring the Psychological and Social Dimensions. Most people believe that cloning a human being is unethical because of the many medical risks. But Dr. Levick assumes that the medical problems will be overcome eventually. He chose to explore the potential psychological perils of being a clone—that is, a person who is genetically identical to someone who already exists. We can anticipate what clones will go through, Dr. Levick says, by looking at people with whom cloned children would have similarities. Those models include identical twins, who are clones of each other; children of famous fathers or mothers, who have to cope with the expectation that they will resemble their parents; and children born through the use of in vitro fertilization and other reproductive technologies, whose parents—if they reveal to their children their high-tech method of conception—may constantly remind their sons and daughters that they are special.
Lila Guterman; The Chronicle of Higher Education

With much of the discussion of human reproductive cloning revolving around vague notions of 'repugnance,' it is refreshing to see someone tackle this area with sobriety and scholarly rigour. . . . Clone Being is a welcome refrain to the cloning debate cacophony, and an argument that policymakers ignore at the peril of future generations.
The Lancet

This book provides the scientific background that should inform any analysis of proposals to produce cloned children.
Cloning and Stem Cells

This is a very readable book. [Levick's examples] compose an impressive analysis of potential problems that are seldom mentioned in ethics discussions about cloning.
New Genetics and Society