Oryx and Crake

In MLA format, write an essay about Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake based on one of the following writing prompts. Remember to include a topic sentence and thesis statement near the beginning of your essay and provide ample support for your assertions. Also be sure to properly reference your quotations and sources, and to include a “Works Cited” page at the end of your essay.

Some topics you may wish to consider are:

Consider the role that “God” plays in the text. Crake had attempted to eliminate the need for deities in the Crakers, yet that need still manifested. Why is this the case? As usual, Crake rationalizes his justification, but these rationalizations rarely satisfy Jimmy. Unfortuantely, Jimmy sometimes has trouble articulating himself and is often unable to effectively counter Crake’s arguments. Using specific examples from the text, try to explain why the Crakers rely on mythology in order to understand the world around them.

One of the major thematic conflicts in the novel is that between morality and capitalist gain (that of profit). Discuss where one ends and the other begins. Capitalism has brought about many technological and cultural advancements, but at what cost? What happens in the world of Oryx and Crake when capital interests are allowed to develop unhindered by morality and ethics? Who’s to blame for this? What’s the real motivation here? How is Crake able to distribute the BlyssPluss pill?

Discuss the relationship between simulacra and reality in the novel. Do you think that simulacra is contributing to the loss of the real, or that simulacra, in a certain way, is real? How do Jimmy and Snowman use simulacra in their day to day lives? How do the Crakers use it (especially at the end)? In the novel is simulacra beneficial or detrimental?

Develop your own original topic and thesis for Oryx and Crake. Ensure that your thesis statement is contentious (i.e. it states an opinion that is not readily obvious) and workable in the allotted time and space limitations.


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