Our definition of a dystopia has evolved as a class the more we go through different literature and movies about fictional dystopian places. With the coronavirus pandemic being in place it also gives us a better chance to look at the characteristics of dystopias in our real world. When we made our connections to how countries were dealing with coronavirus and the measures, they were taking to handle it and how different businesses and peoples would benefit or hurt from this pandemic it made the word dystopia become a reality in a lot of different aspects. However, before this pandemic we were able to connect characteristics of Dystopias to many modern governments and policies in place all around the world. For instance, we connected it to how women and girls in the middle east struggle to get fair treatment and equal education opportunities. My newest definition of dystopia would be something along the lines of a place or governmental regime that is oppressing people using things like social class, race, bodily restrictions, etc.
Xavier I would say has dystopian characteristics but isn’t a dystopia. The administration at Xavier and faculty and sometimes students can be oppressive to each other and others wanting to attend. The administration cutting resources to mental health professionals while we were still on campus is an example of that. Also, the way that the same students are allowed to continuously run for the same positions in SGA is also unfair but may not per say be Dystopian. Xavier charging students for parking passes while in tuition and also adding charging students to drop classes that we’ve already been charged for are also some examples.
Universities as a whole can be dystopian. The American university system is one of privilege. With the extremely high tuition rates and forcing underprivileged kids to enter mountains of debt for a degree that they will likely have high difficulty finding a job in that field, college can be very oppressive to those that don’t have the money to attend. It also creates a social status gap because having a degree allows for higher paying jobs which then puts those who were already privileged at an even better advantage than others.