Dystopia

Certainly not a utopia

Definition

An imagined place or state in which everything is unpleasant or bad, typically a totalitarian or environmentally degraded one.

Characteristics

"The life where nothing was ever unexpected. Or inconvenient. Or unusual. The life without colour, pain or past." -Lois Lowry, The Giver

Characteristics of a dystopia are that of:

  • No freethinking or independent thought
  • Usually a controlling or oppressive government, or no government at all.
  • Either extreme poverty or a huge income gap between the rich and the poor
  • Citizens live in a dehumanized state
  • Citizens are percieved to be under constant surveillance

Controls

  • Corporate Control: The Hunger Games because everybody living within their own districts were controlled by the government but also controlled by advertising and media. Hence the reaping and the participation in The Hunger Games overall. Media controlled them all, and ran them.
  • Bureaucratic Control: The Truman Show because Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey) was controlled by the government and his everyday life turned out to be a television show. His whole life wasn't his life after all, it was all just a modern television show for everybody to watch and gain amusement from.
  • Bureaucratic Control: The Giver because everybody was controlled by the government and forced to take everyday injections in order to not see colors and be "the same" as everybody else. The government wanted normalcy and was trying to achieve that by allowing gifts when you reach a certain age and forcing you to see the way everybody else is.

Hero- Truman Burbank

An example of a dystopian hero is Truman Burbank from the movie The Truman Show for a multitude of reasons. Some of these reasons are:


  • Truman, towards the end of the movie, believed that something was extremely wrong with the society he lived in.
  • Truman feels trapped in his society not only because his life turned out to be one big reality television show and he was literally trapped, but also because he's emotionally trapped with giving up this life and finding a way out or staying with all he's ever known.
  • Truman also helped his audience recognize the negative aspects of having your daily life not only be the same day in and day out but also the negative aspects of having your whole life turn out to be a lie. He showed us that his world, to be brutally honest, sucked. Always having the same thing happen sucks, and realizing that your whole life has been a lie sucks.
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