Dystopian Fiction Analysis

7263 Words30 Pages
Q1- Speculative fiction texts frequently have a clear political critique at their center, offering warnings about the present and the future. How can dystopian fiction go beyond warning to testimony? Use texts by both American or European and Middle Eastern or North African (MENA) authors to explore how dystopian fiction can be a medium for testimony or bearing witness, as well as criticism. Are there aspects of dystopian speculative fiction that make it particularly appropriate for testimony? Focus your analysis on three or four novels, though feel free to reference other books from your list.

Contemporary Western and Arabic dystopian speculative fiction offer a powerful critique of politics, and they share several themes, including violence, torture, repression, surveillance, human rights violations, absurdity, surrealism, and futurism. Such themes are depicted in the Western tradition to warn against the realization of a totalitarian regime, the “worst of all possible worlds,” a nightmarish state which might exist in the future if corrective and prophylactic measures are not taken in the present; however, present Arabic dystopian fiction does not imagine a hypothetical future, but rather, testifies and protests against the “worst of all possible worlds” as a present world state, and perhaps petitions for hope to found a better world—being dystopianism which calls for utopianism. Arab dystopian fiction can be viewed as testimonials which serve either to incriminate
Open Document