Following my initial reading of the story “Bloodchild”, I was shocked, and couldn’t quite wrap my head around the true “point”, or a true theme, within the story. I noted the peculiarity of the concept of a male pregnancy, and the power dynamic between the Tlic and the Terrans.
Interdependence was one of the biggest underlying themes that I took away from this story. The general interactions between the Tlic and the Terrans, as well as the dependence of the Tlic depending on the Terrans for hosting their spawns and the Terrans depending on the Tlic for governance and nutrients and extended longevity from Tlic eggs, all contribute to the interdependent society that they live in. Although some may argue that the Tlic are abusing their power and are harmfully using the Terrans to host their young, there is no doubt that there are things given and taken from both parties.
Regarding the power dynamics within the story, the idea that the Tlic are indeed receiving more from the Terrans than they are giving is a concept worth exploring. Personally, I feel that you could make an argument for either side, as there are both pros and cons to their societal relationship. The image of a young boy, Bram Lomas, in a state of unconciousness and in immense pain, hurts the reputation of the Tlic and displays them in a harmful, negative light. Gan is then pressured to slaughter an animal, something he has never done before, in order to save a life that was not his responsibility to save. On the opposing side, the Terrans consume the eggs provided for them by the Tlic in order to receive luxeries such as longevity and a youthful appearance.
In summary, “Bloodchild” captures an interdependent society, whether it was truly equal or not. The varying power dynamics shown throughout the story contribute to characterization and display the interesting differences in this society versus the society we live in today.