At the start of the semester I viewed a dystopia as a place consisting of endless suffering for those who were deemed as outcast in society. In this world people were seen as less than human therefore they deserved to be treated as such. Their dystopian world would be filled with constant sadness, pain and stress. In my mind this was the full story as this is what I have seen in apocalyptic movies and in history. I will admit now that my definition though not wrong in my opinion could of use a little more depth. For example, not all dystopias are the same.
Depending on the people, culture and ultimately the power of the oppressors, the oppressed in different dystopias have very different experiences. For example women in early America lived in a world where they did not get to choose who they got married to, what they did for work or even in some cases where they lived. This can bee seen as a dystopia for women as they had no power, they were merely the sexual properties of men. Similarly you had African American that were enslaved who also to a greater degree had no power or input into their own lives. They were relegated to livestock whose sole purpose was to enrich and serve their masters. Though both scenarios are similar in the sense that both groups lived in a world where they had no say so they both suffered in different ways.
Today I view a Dystopia as a world in which there is extreme and endless suffering. In such a world those who suffer have no protection from chaos, poor living conditions, and a dreadful future. In this world there are often those who do not suffer and are actually happy and thriving. The thriving can be described as the oppressors. Based on what I have learned in this class I would say that my definition is mostly influenced by my reading of Young`s five faces of Oppression. Young believed that oppression is built upon 5 cores or faces. They include exploitation, marginalization, powerlessness, cultural imperialism, and violence.