For each of these book/TV show/film premises, discuss:

  • the likelihood of that happening (Is it very likely to happen? Is it feasible? Is it unlikely to happen? Is it impossible? Is it too far-fetched?)
  • its pros and cons, should that actually come about
  • its ethical implications

Useful language:

  • That’s highly unlikely.
  • There’s a very slim chance that …
  • In all likelihood, …………………………. will actually come true/ will become a reality.
  1. Space Tourism (2001: A Space Odyssey)
  2. Time Travel (Back to the Future)
  3. A Ministry devoted to rewriting past news, to tell what actually happened and never be wrong (George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four)
  4. Parents being able to track their children’s location, current vision and hearing and automatically censor distressing material through implanted technology. (Black Mirror)
  5. Teleportation: the act of travelling by an imaginary very fast form of transport that uses special technology or special mental powers (Star Trek)
  6. Creating genetically perfect babies (Gattaca)
  7. Falling in love with a female operating system (Her)
  8. Flying cars (Blade Runner)
  9. Having a smartphone implanted in your hand (Years and Years)
  10. Police foreseeing future crimes (Minority Report)
  11. Having a clone of your deceased partner/loved one made. (Black Mirror)
  12. Turning your body and soul into digital data after death (Years and Years)
  13. Life after death being a virtual reality-induced dream (Abre los Ojos / Vanilla Sky)
  14. Creating human clones to harvest their organs and give them to sick humans (The Island)
  15. Implanting chips on human brains to record everything you live through, and be able to revise what actually happened later on (Black Mirror)
  16. Enhancing food, adding vitamins and nutrients, with almost no natural ingredients; people not needing to cook at all (A. Huxley’s Brave New World)

You can download a pdf file with the task here.

To round up the activity, I simply love this epilogue/extra feature for Gattaca. Lots of food for thought.