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Distopia - Essay Example

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Dystopia is a genre of fiction that is also called anti-utopia. "The word comes from dys-Utopia, referring to the classic 'Utopia' which described a perfect world. The word 'Utopia' itself means 'Nowhere' but has come to mean paradise, since that is what the work described" (Eugene Luther, 2004)…
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Download file to see previous pages The fictional stories of dystopia always have a tragic end. A first time dystopian reader who expects regular ending will be surprised by the tragic events in the stories. Writers like Yevgeny Zamyatin, H. G. Wells, Eugene Luther, etc., had written many utopian and dystopian stories.
Yevgeny Zamyatin's WE was completed in 1920 and published in English in the year 1924. It's an irony or can be said as totalitarian conditions prevailed in Russia prevented Zamyatin to release his book in his own country until 1952, fifteen years after Zamyatin's death. The book describes how life would be like in a totalitarian state. It also reflects the author's view on Russia, which was governed by communists under the leadership of Stalin.
In this dystopian story the world is under a totalitarian state and was called as One State. This One State is controlled under the dictatorship of one who was called as Benefactor. In this world no one has a name, everyone is recognised by his or her identification numbers. Each individual addresses other by his or her number and always work in unison. In One state everything is made of glass including buildings, tools and machinery. There is no privacy for One state's citizens. "Every building is made of this same glass, enabling any behaviour not proscribed by the Table of Hours, the sacred text of the One State, to be easily seen and reported" (Mirra Ginsburg, 1972).
In this glass-enclosed city of absolutely straight lines, nameless numbers (individuals are recognised by their designations) - survivors of a devastating war - live out lives devoid of passion and creativity. An individual by the number D-503 also lives the same life as others and is chief builder of the One state's prestigious project called as Integral. Integral is a mega project, which involves in the construction of a spaceship that will be used to explore outer planets and bring them under the leadership of Benefactor.
A network of Guardians constantly monitors the activities of One state's citizens. The Guardians responsibility is to check irregular behaviour of an individual. Out of this state is a green jungle where rebels reside and D-503 falls in love with a woman I-330 who works with the rebels. "D-503's rigidly structured life grows in complexity as he meets I-330, a fiercely dominant woman who seduces him, first from his lover O-90, then from his beloved One State" (Mirra Ginsburg, 1972). This new relationship tears his conscience apart and he no longer thinks straight. He becomes so involved with the rebels that he joins them against One state.
George Orwell's 1984 is another dystopian story that ends in a tragic note. The story took place in London in the year 1984. The story revolves around the life of Winston who lives in London, which is a part of Oceania. Oceania is one of the three countries that exist in the world; the other two are Eurasia and Eastasia. These three countries are always at war. Oceania is a totalitarian state under the leadership of Big Brother and strict censorship is implemented through out the country. "Winston is disgusted with his oppressed life and secretly longs to join the fabled Brotherhood, a supposed group of underground rebels intent on overthrowing the government" (George Orwell, 1949). Winston falls in love with Julia. Julia hates inner party as much as Winston does. Winston meets a person called O'Brien whom he thinks as a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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