dystopia- a bleak society with a less than perfect livelihood for many of its citizens
In most of the literature I have read that has dystopian themes or suggests dystopian lifestyles, the description of the city or community was quite grim. They often seem as if many of the people living there are content with their lives, but have a small need for something better and are unable to change anything.
“The Hunger Games” series seems to be a good example. From the eyes of Katniss, life seems okay, but it could be better. Her family does not have much but since that is all they have known, it is not a major issue; they get by however they can. As the annual hunger game comes, the tone of the novel changes. It is noticably tense and gives the reader a sense of unease, as if this should not be happening However, without power, not much can be done.
The different classes of people seem to live very different lives as well. There are people who are quite wealthy and there are those who are comfortable. However, the start of the hunger games changes this. The participants are given a rather even playing field and they become the ultimate definition of “survival of the fittest.” Those who live seemingly better lives, are experiencing the true reality of a dystopia. With this battle, the true colors of society are seen by everyone, especially the players. They seem to find more truth of the reality they live in, a true dystopia.
One could also compare this definition to the current American society. There are many people here living anything but perfect lives. As we battle with rising rates of poverty, it makes me think, “Could we be living in a dystopia?” Life can be quite bleak for many of us at times, whether we admit it or not. While there will be people living better lives than others, if there is a large majority of those living woefully, is it safe to think if not say we are living in a dystopia?