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A Look into the Future

The popular genre of dystopian fiction in Young Adult Literature presents an interesting critique on modern day society.

Rachel Popa

on 5 May 2011

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Transcript of A Look into the Future

A Look into the Future
A Critique of Today Dystopian Fiction in Young Adult Literature What About It? Quite popular in Young Adult Literature, Dystopian Fiction often uses the genre of SciFi/Fantasy to present a not-so-perfect new society.
It offers a unique form of critique for modern day society

Some such novels are... The Hunger Games
Trilogy The Hunger Games In the first book of the Hunger Games trilogy, readers are introduced to Katniss Everdeen, a resident of District 12 in the postapocalyptic country of Panem. Every year the districts are subject to the Hunger Games, organized by the powerful Capitol.
When Katniss' sister is nominated to participate in the brutal Games, Katniss volunteers herself in her stead. In her fight to survive, Katniss and her friends begin to understand the true power of the Capitol, and question whether or not it deserves to be obeyed. Catching Fire In the second book of the Hunger Games Trilogy, there is talk of rebellion against the Capitol. At the core of the possible uprising is Katniss and Peeta, with their defiant end to last year's Hunger Games. Unless they walk a fine line on their tour with the Districts, there could be some horrifying consequences...
Through a second visit to the Hunger Games and a new band of characters to support her, Katniss learns what it means to truly be a rebel of the Capitol. Mockingjay In the final installment of the Hunger Games Trilogy, Katniss has become the Mockingjay, the symbol of the rebellion against the Capitol. Through the help of many Districts, an all-out assault begins on the Capitol itself. But Katniss finds that there is much to lose in order to gain freedom. The Uglies Series Uglies In a post-scarcity dystopian world, Tally Youngblood longs to turn "Pretty". Through extreme cosmetic surgery, everyone gets a new look at the age of Sixteen. But Tally soon finds friends who choose to live outside the norm, and that turning Pretty may have its ugly side. Pretties Forgetting her life as an Ugly, Tally has finally joined New Pretty Town. It's not until a visit from her past and two pills to offer a cure to the effects of the surgery does she begin to remember why she left in the first place. But when things go wrong she begins to realize that there is more to the cure than meets the eye. Specials Tally has become a Special; an elite fighting machine. Used to control and suppress others, Tally soon realizes the consequences for both herself and her friends. In the final chapter of the trilogy, Tally struggles to find what her personal journey must become. Now the Question is... What do these two trilogies have in common? What criticisms are presented about their society? What criticisms do they present about our present society? What effect does it have in YA Literature? Aspects of Control The Hunger Games Uglies used the operation
plays on desires for control
deceptive power and dominion
utilize fun and distraction
influenced by others, rebels last minute
all forced to have operation
Shay/David inspiring influences
Beauty and Nature used the hunger games
plays on fears for control
blatant power and dominion
utilize fear, shock
Katniss forced to compete
rebels due to her own desires
Gale/Peeta inspiring influences
War and strife Similarities View past society as barbaric and primitive
No true history involved in education
Government has strong and domineering control throughout
Question whether previous society was so bad after all What Criticisms are Presented about their Society? A society in which extreme beauty reigns supreme, everyone who is "normal" is ugly. Taught to hate their appearance. Skewed Ideal for Beauty Cruel Means of Control Hunger Games used as a vicious means of control: children forced to compete in order to show the complete strength of the Capitol.
Capitol uses isolation from other districts to keep from uprisings.
Capitol encourages poverty in order to create complete dependence upon them
Government uses a cosmetic procedure as an excuse to create more compliant citizens. Restrictions of Freedom Cannot wander outside of one's own district
Tally forced to assist the Specials and cooperate by their rules
Cannot express opposing views to government or Capitol
Free will largely contained; cannot make one's own decisions in many various areas of life Lack of Knowledge In both societies historical knowledge of their past is either twisted or omitted entirely
Encouraged to believe that current society is "better" due to how they handle the preexisting problems before the current form of government And Our
Society? The Great Effect of Media Media is largely criticized in both of the trilogies. In Hunger Games, an extremist form of reality television shows how shock and awe can be pushed to the limits. In Uglies, societies obsession with appearance has led a cosmetic operation be the perfect tool for a means of control. In both instances, it seems that it is the current trend of the effects media has in our present society that leads to these types of dystopian worlds. YA Literature The young adult genre is the perfect
category for dystopian fiction. Through
a critical lens, teenagers are able to learn to see
the world in a different light. Society does not always
have your best interests at heart. Sometimes you have to learn to fend for yourself. Sometimes you
have to dig deeper. In the eyes of dystopian
fiction, if you don't change your world, the
world will turn around and change
you. For Fun... Hunger Games: Katniss and Rue Uglies..
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