History WhatMeasureIsANonHuman / Literature

16th Apr '17 2:56:08 PM nombretomado
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* In Lee Lightner's TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} SpaceWolf novel ''Sons of Fenris'', Cadmus, while surrounded by servitors, nevertheless thinks of himself as alone because they are more machine than man. They really are- and not ''sentient'' machines either. Aside from physical enhancements, the process of creating a Servitor essentially consists of tearing out any part of the original human brain not immediately useful for the Servitor's assigned task. In a real sense they're dead- the practice of creating them shows just how much measure even a ''human'' is in the CrapsackWorld of TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}. Although a Tech Priest would see otherwise.

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* In Lee Lightner's TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} SpaceWolf Literature/SpaceWolf novel ''Sons of Fenris'', Cadmus, while surrounded by servitors, nevertheless thinks of himself as alone because they are more machine than man. They really are- and not ''sentient'' machines either. Aside from physical enhancements, the process of creating a Servitor essentially consists of tearing out any part of the original human brain not immediately useful for the Servitor's assigned task. In a real sense they're dead- the practice of creating them shows just how much measure even a ''human'' is in the CrapsackWorld of TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}. Although a Tech Priest would see otherwise.
19th Mar '17 10:24:44 AM Sammettik
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--->"[A]ny creature that has sufficient intelligence to understand the laws of the magical community and to bear part of the responsibility in shaping those laws."[softreturn]
:: Interestingly, centaurs and merpeople qualify as beings under this standard, but demanded classification as "beasts" regardless.

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--->"[A]ny creature that has sufficient intelligence to understand the laws of the magical community and to bear part of the responsibility in shaping those laws."[softreturn]
::
"
***
Interestingly, centaurs and merpeople qualify as beings under this standard, but demanded classification as "beasts" regardless.



'''Royal (Kingsley Shacklebolt)''': "I'd say that it's one short step from "wizards first" to "pure-bloods first", and then to "Death Eaters". We're all human, aren't we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving."[softreturn]
:: However, that sympathy does not extend to letting them in on TheMasquerade and giving them the choice to flee the country when the BigBad takes power, or giving them legal protection from being {{Mind Wipe}}d whenever it's convenient.

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'''Royal (Kingsley Shacklebolt)''': "I'd say that it's one short step from "wizards first" to "pure-bloods first", and then to "Death Eaters". We're all human, aren't we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving."[softreturn]
::
"
***
However, that sympathy does not extend to letting them in on TheMasquerade and giving them the choice to flee the country when the BigBad takes power, or giving them legal protection from being {{Mind Wipe}}d whenever it's convenient.



* This trope is in full play in the Literature/MoreauSeries. The titular [[UpliftedAnimal Moreaus]] were created as soldiers and workers in hazardous places, and treated as expendable despite being fully sapient. This has long-term consequences, as moreaus tend to have short lifespans and are prone to all severe physical degeneration with age. Even after the wars that spawned them are ended, they're treated as second-class citizens at best and slaves at worst across the globe. The [[BioAugmentation engineered humans]] called Frankensteins are treated no better, despite looking fully or almost fully human (Evi Isham has catlike pupils for enhanced nightvision, while Mr K's skull is slightly deformed to accomodate his altered brain).
* In _The Marvelous Land of Oz_ by L. Frank Baum, the antagonist General Jinjur says "I bear you no ill will, I assure you; but lest you should prove troublesome to me in the future I shall order you all to be destroyed. That is, all except the boy, who belongs to old Mombi and must be restored to her keeping. The rest of you are not human, and therefore it will not be wicked to demolish you." While the heroes consider this direly bad, no one says it would be murdering prisoners. Separately, the narrator notes that the Saw Horse (a sentient creature) enters the palace of the Tin Woodsman, 'having no idea that mounts would be expected to remain outside'.

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* This trope is in full play in the Literature/MoreauSeries.''Literature/MoreauSeries''. The titular [[UpliftedAnimal Moreaus]] were created as soldiers and workers in hazardous places, and treated as expendable despite being fully sapient. This has long-term consequences, as moreaus tend to have short lifespans and are prone to all severe physical degeneration with age. Even after the wars that spawned them are ended, they're treated as second-class citizens at best and slaves at worst across the globe. The [[BioAugmentation engineered humans]] called Frankensteins are treated no better, despite looking fully or almost fully human (Evi Isham has catlike pupils for enhanced nightvision, while Mr K's skull is slightly deformed to accomodate his altered brain).
* In _The ''The Marvelous Land of Oz_ Oz'' by L. Frank Baum, the antagonist General Jinjur says "I bear you no ill will, I assure you; but lest you should prove troublesome to me in the future I shall order you all to be destroyed. That is, all except the boy, who belongs to old Mombi and must be restored to her keeping. The rest of you are not human, and therefore it will not be wicked to demolish you." While the heroes consider this direly bad, no one says it would be murdering prisoners. Separately, the narrator notes that the Saw Horse (a sentient creature) enters the palace of the Tin Woodsman, 'having no idea that mounts would be expected to remain outside'.
19th Mar '17 10:23:14 AM Sammettik
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** This was quite possibly right, since this troper has never heard Atvar say sorry for Washington, and none of the humans ever called him out on it, even in 'Homeward Bound'. In fact, this trope is majorly subverted by the race when dealing with us, and the only reason they don't nuke us out of existence is because the colonisation fleet is on the way.
19th Mar '17 10:20:35 AM Sammettik
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** Aside from the Laws, in some of the earlier books, Harry all but states that he doesn't consider nonhumans to be people, even if they're intelligent, sane, incredibly humanlike, or even [[spoiler:related to him]] [[CharacterDevelopment (He gets better.)]]. However, this doesn't affect the way he actually treats them. Part of this may have something to do with humans being the only beings to have souls.
*** Except that Bob explicitly says that humans aren't the only thing that has souls. Angels, for instance, are composed of only soul and nothing else.

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** Aside from the Laws, in some of the earlier books, Harry all but states that he doesn't consider nonhumans to be people, even if they're intelligent, sane, incredibly humanlike, or even [[spoiler:related to him]] [[CharacterDevelopment (He gets better.)]]. However, this doesn't affect the way he actually treats them. Part of this may have something to do with humans being the only beings to have souls.
*** Except that
Bob explicitly says that humans aren't the only thing that has souls. Angels, for instance, are composed of only soul and nothing else.



** Wait. The [[HumanAliens ones humans can live in peace with]] are called "[[ImAHumanitarian ramen]]"?



** About half of everything PKD wrote deals with this trope.
*** In ''Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?'', the differences between a human and an android (an underlying lack of empathy for other living beings) are introduced early, vanishingly small, and surprisingly significant. In ''We Can Build You'', the robots are more human than one of the lead characters.

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** About half of everything PKD wrote deals with this trope.
***
trope. In ''Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?'', the differences between a human and an android (an underlying lack of empathy for other living beings) are introduced early, vanishingly small, and surprisingly significant. In ''We Can Build You'', the robots are more human than one of the lead characters.
27th Feb '17 10:54:04 PM Discar
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* ''Literature/WeAreLegionWeAreBob'': [[TheTheocracy FAITH]] views replicants as simply machines that they own, to be controlled or disposed of as they fit. Other nations appear to think similarly, but we don't get much detail.
11th Sep '16 9:39:10 PM PaulA
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* A major running theme of the later books of OrsonScottCard's first ''[[Literature/EndersGame Ender]]'' series (''Speaker for the Dead'', ''Xenocide'', ''Children of the Mind''), where aliens (human and non-) are rated based on how alike to oneself they are. It is acceptable - or at least a necessary evil - to kill aliens that are hostile and are impossible to communicate with, or that are possible to communicate with but so different in mindset that communication is essentially futile (lumped together under the term "varelse"). Non-human aliens that can be communicated with and peacefully coexisted with are termed "ramen." Perhaps most important to this scale is that these values are relative to the evaluator's own understanding of the alien: that is, once someone understands how to communicate with an alien, they instantly switch from varelse to ramen. Any alien species in the "varelse" category is a deficiency of understanding of the human classifying them as such. As such, some aliens encountered move from varelse to ramen over the course of one or more books, usually not without a significant degree of bloodshed before understanding by both sides is attained.

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* A major running theme of the later books of OrsonScottCard's Creator/OrsonScottCard's first ''[[Literature/EndersGame Ender]]'' series (''Speaker for the Dead'', ''Xenocide'', ''Children of the Mind''), (''Literature/SpeakerForTheDead'', ''Literature/{{Xenocide}}'', ''Literature/ChildrenOfTheMind''), where aliens (human and non-) are rated based on how alike to oneself they are. It is acceptable - or at least a necessary evil - to kill aliens that are hostile and are impossible to communicate with, or that are possible to communicate with but so different in mindset that communication is essentially futile (lumped together under the term "varelse"). Non-human aliens that can be communicated with and peacefully coexisted with are termed "ramen." Perhaps most important to this scale is that these values are relative to the evaluator's own understanding of the alien: that is, once someone understands how to communicate with an alien, they instantly switch from varelse to ramen. Any alien species in the "varelse" category is a deficiency of understanding of the human classifying them as such. As such, some aliens encountered move from varelse to ramen over the course of one or more books, usually not without a significant degree of bloodshed before understanding by both sides is attained.
5th Sep '16 11:21:35 AM ReaderAt2046
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* {{Discussed}} in the ''Literature/DragonKeeperChronicles''. The heroes initially have no problem with exterminating the quiss migrations precisely ''because'' they are non-sapient beasts and cannot be negotiated with. When the heroes discover a strain of quiss modified by a MadScientist villain to have sapience, they specifically declare that ''those'' quiss are not to be wiped out without at least giving them the option to go back to the oceans where they belong. (Many of the heroes are telepaths, so they can tell whether a quiss swarm contains any of the sapient variety before wiping it out.)
17th Aug '16 12:21:05 AM wmyork
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* Vigorously inverted in ''Literature/TheGirlWithAllTheGifts'', which primarily revolves around whether the protagonist, a little girl named Melanie, is [[spoiler:an inhuman zombie monster to be experimented on or killed, or actually more human than the remaining uninfected humans]].
8th Jun '16 9:25:56 PM PeverellForever
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* Sydney Halgren ''Literature/FatesRoad'' barely thinks twice when she's asked to create a spell that will wipe out every single magical creature in existence. She only begins to worry when she finds out it'll also kill the sorcerers.
29th May '16 4:03:10 PM ading
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* Literature/WetGoddess: One of, if not the most significant theme in the novel.

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* Literature/WetGoddess: ''Literature/WetGoddess'': One of, if not the most significant theme in the novel.


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* Averted by Meursault in ''Literature/TheStranger'', who considers the life of Salamano's completely non-anthropomorphic dog to be worth exactly as much as that of a human. Meursault sees all deaths, be they animal, human, or [[spoiler:his own]], in the same way: they're unfortunate, and he prefers to delay them as much as possible, but they've got to happen sooner or later, so why bother getting upset about it?
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