The Maker of Men and His Formula
THE MAKER OF MEN AND HIS FORMULA
by Jules Hoche
adapted by Brian Stableford
cover by Stephan Martiniere
I cannot describe the poignant emotion that gripped my entrails when, leaning over the first egg, I recognized the sketch of an embryo presenting all the characteristics of a human fetus. Nor can I describe my horrified stupor in the presence of the amorphous monster which grimaced behind the translucent wall of another egg...
Jules Hoche's The Maker of Men and His Formula (1906) was amongst several notable novels inspired by H. G. Wells, in this case The Island of Doctor Moreau. In it, Hoche tried to go further than Wells, featuring a much bolder project in the manufacture of human beings, with more complex results.
Whereas Moreau confined himself to surgical methods, Dr. Brillat-Dessaigne starts from primordial slime, subjecting it to a process of accelerated evolution to produce the "Pure Ones" who are not merely human, but anticipations of the ultimate humankind. The addition to the plot of the "Unclean Ones", in contrast to the Pure Ones, opens numerous interesting biological and philosophical questions, and adds an element of horrific bizarrerie that culminates in a garish, violent climax.
The Maker of Men... is one of the outstanding items of the "scientific marvel fiction" of its era.
The Maker of Men and his Formula [Le Faiseur d'hommes et sa formule] (Juven, 1906)
Doctor Quid [Le Docteur Quid] (1878)
Meister Fult (1878)
A Mechanical Couple [Un Couple mécanique] (1878)
Introduction, Afterword and Notes by Brian Stableford.