PCA Dystopian Fiction

Danielle Herget
Fisher College, Boston
Resident theater professor
“Professor of Humanities”
once a semester teach a class on dystopian fiction

This generation’s apathy growing. Surface level reading.

Common dystopian
Brave New World, Fahrenheit 451
Hunger Games, Divergent

Average student shows very little interest in these unless related to social media.
Cinemas are selling out. Advance copies of novels are offered.

Paradoxical notion of dystopian
Examine how present can effect the future, critical analysis
Potentially make an impact on the world because of this

Themes: repressive government, strange relationships of humans and ecology
Characters: rebellious, flawed
Setting: government control

Dystopia comes from 20thC 2 World Wars, nuclear proliferation, US in wars now, economy is bad, protests on the street
Have become more relevant in 21st C

Particularly useful for social justice teaching

bell hooks “teaches dystopian literature so that we can challenge it”

Recent study of 3000 college students, 1/3 said they would sell their vote for an iPod.

Reality television is the opposite of dystopia.
Culture of distraction
“one believes things because one has been accustomed to believe them” Aldous Huxley

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