1.An imaginary place or state in which the condition of life is extremely bad, as from deprivation, oppression, or terror.
American Psychological Association (APA):
dystopia. (n.d.). The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Retrieved January 28, 2010, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/dystopia
Dystopian Fiction in it's basic state is described as the opposite of Utopian fiction, but that is almost too simplistic a term to describe the genre.
Here are features of Dystopian Fiction:
•Post-apocalyptic setting, usually there is the background story of natural disaster, revolutions, war, climate change, some kind of devastating event that changed society
•Dystopians are normally future based
•A difference in the standard of living than what we enjoy in today's society. This can be a poorer standard of living, as in The Hunger Games, or sometimes a more materialistic environment, like such in Brave New World and Uglies.
•The main character questions society, or is exposed to the baser ideals of their society within the plot, leading them to the knowledge that something is terribly wrong with their world.
•There is usually a group/revolution occurring within the novel that the controlling state does not have control over that the protagonist teams up with or strives to join/become like, although nothing is being changed by the character or group. In Brave New World, this group is comprised of the people on the reservation.
•Dystopian fiction typically elaborates on the darker society trends that effect us today. Usually the reader can identify things within our own society that could lead to this future terrible state.
•Within the plot of a dystopian fiction, the protagonist usually will try to escape or bring down the society that restricts them
Click on the Dystopian Challenge button to get all the details on how to enter.