The Children of Men: Human salvation begins in 2021 | Digital Trends Spanish
There are many unknowns about what 2021 will be like, particularly after the tragic year that we just ended.
However, human beings do not have the capacity to know what the next 12 months will be like, although we can resort to cultural products to at least imagine a possible scenario.
The novel The Children of Men (The children of man), by writer Philip Dorothy James, presents us with a dramatic setting. It’s 2021 and 25 years ago, in 1994, all men became infertile.
The last births occurred in 1995 so, since then, humanity seems to be doomed to disappear.
Aware of this imminent end, people seem to accept the violence and repression imposed by the Guardian of England, who proclaimed himself so after society lost all interest in politics, elections and the democratic system.
The year 2021 does not look good at all in the book that PD James published in 1992: there is a strong repression in the streets, murders, violence and the elderly are “invited”, and sometimes even forced, to commit suicide in mass.
Meanwhile, immigrants are forced to work until they are 60 years old and then they are returned to their places of origin. There are also no prisons, and those who commit crimes and are found guilty are sent to an abandoned island, where they do not even receive visitors.
In this catastrophic scenario, people are totally disinterested in the future and only seem to wait for their death.
As in Alfonso Cuarón’s 2006 film, the protagonist of the novel is Theodore Faron, a person who seems to have lost all interest in the future.
However, his inconsequential passage through the planet takes a turn when he meets a young former student who, surprisingly, is pregnant and the baby in her womb could become humanity’s last hope.
The film version of the Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón achieved success when it was released in 2006.
Of course, the adaptation is set in 2027; Cuarón may have felt that 2021 was too close, so he decided to delay events for six years.
Either way, the film portrays the apocalyptic scenario that James proposed in his novel quite well: society has lost all its structure, there is no respect for rights, and violence and repression abound in the streets.
It has also been several decades since the last birth, so humanity is doomed to disappear. However, an unexpected pregnancy changes this destiny that seemed irreversible.
In the case of the book, it is not explained what caused the men to become infertile, but it is known that the writer Philip Dorothy James was inspired by a news story to write her novel.
In particular, a study that warned that the large amount of hormones in food could be associated with a decrease in the fertility rate of Western men.
For some reason, the novelist wanted 2021 to be the year of humanity’s salvation. Enough to get excited?