Imagine a beautiful place. Everyone is happy and always smiling. There’s no violence or crime; only peace, love and happiness. Enjoying everything so far? Good. Now, imagine that beautiful, perfect place turned upside down and riddled with despair and agony. Not so nice, huh?
You just imagined two conflicting but related ideas: an utopia and a dystopia. Utopias are often heard in society but most people have never heard of a dystopia. According to Oxford’s English Dictionary, a dystopia is “a place or condition where everything is as bad as it can possibly be”. Personally, I believe that every utopia is a dystopia in disguise.
Let’s start with the basics; the origin of the word. Writer Brian Sfinas said that the origin of the word utopia was originated in the 1500s by Sir Thomas More. Since then, many authors have used the opposite to get their points across. Even with that, dystopia didn’t become mainstream until the 20th century. In literature, dystopias have been displayed in different ways but have several identical qualities that make them dystopias. In a dystopia, there’s either an authoritarian or totalitarian form of government in place, a social control system, a lack or absence of individual freedoms/rights, constant warfare, and a military-like police force.
The novel Brave New World is a perfect example of a dystopia. Written by Aldous Huxley, Brave New World takes place some time in the future of London. The world( The World State is what it’s called in the novel) is ruled by 10 people. In The World State, children no longer born. They are made and preprogrammed by the government. The embryos are “bokanovskified”(p. 19); this is a process that allows the embryo to create between 8 and 96 identical siblings. when children are “born”, they are made to look alike so that they are easy to control and are preprogrammed according to the class (Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and Epsilon). Each class is programmed to think that they are better...