Studvent, Alyssa Blog Post # 6

Dystopia: an unfair/unjust society where most if not all of its civilians experience oppression through exploitation, violence, fear, hopelessness, and/or marginalization.

I was influenced by the reading of “Five Faces of Oppression” by Iris Young in regards to my definition. Within this reading, Young describes the five faces of oppression as exploitation, marginalization, powerlessness, cultural imperialism, and violence. The authority within these dystopian societies uses oppression as a means to “protect its citizens”, and as a means to perfect their society and economy. This is not the case as their citizens are exploited without regard for their well-being and rather for their gain whether political, financial, and/or personal. Violence whether physical, psychological, or structural is also common within these dystopias as this wielding of power is used to somewhat enforce compliance and prevent traitors or perceived threats. With this comes fear, fear and violence are used to control and manipulate individuals through intimidation or coercion if they are fearful it is believed citizens will maintain obedience and also discourage resistance against the higher order. Oftentimes oppression is found through the stripping of individuals’ identities or marginalization. The loss of cultural identity and/or suppression of cultural expression suppresses the unity and stability of groups which are more likely to revolve if they have cultural similarities with their peers. This is also used to spread the ideology of the majority and/or those in power to those who maybe do not practice the same practices. The spread of “man’s ideals [which are] his ideas of possible perfection of individuals” (Civilizations and Its Discontents, Freud) is shared through marginalization as this is sharing of one people’s ideals because they feel their mindsets and ideologies are superior to nonother and will help create perfectionism.

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