by George Orwell
What is a Utopia?
• A place, state, or condition that is ideally
perfect in respect of politics, laws, customs,
and conditions.
• Example: The Garden of Eden
What is a Dystopia?
• A futuristic, imagined universe in which
oppressive societal control and the illusion of
a perfect society (Utopia) are maintained
through corporate, bureaucratic,
technological, moral, or totalitarian control.
Dystopias, through an exaggerated worst-case
scenario, make a criticism about a current
trend, societal norm, or political system.
Characteristics of a Dystopian
• Propaganda is used to control the citizens of society.
• Information, independent thought, and freedom are
• A figurehead or concept is worshipped by the citizens of
the society.
• Citizens are perceived to be under constant surveillance.
• Citizens have a fear of the outside world.
• Citizens live in a dehumanized state.
• The natural world is banished and distrusted.
• Citizens conform to uniform expectations. Individuality and
dissent are bad.
• The society is an illusion of a perfect utopian world.
A Dystopian Protagonist
• Often feels trapped and is struggling to escape.
• Questions the existing social and political
• Believes or feels that something is terribly wrong
with the society in which he or she lives. •
• Helps the audience recognizes the negative
aspects of the dystopian world through his or her
Examples of Dystopian
The Giver by Lois Lowry
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Dystopian Movies
The Matrix
Blade Runner
V for Vendetta
by George Orwell
After The Atomic War, the world is divided
into three states. London is a city in Oceania,
ruled by a Party who has total control over all
its citizens. Winston Smith is one of the
bureaucrats, rewriting history in one of the
departments. One day he commits the crime
of falling in love with a woman named Julia.
They try to escape Big Brother's listening and
viewing devices, but, of course, nobody can
really escape...
• 1984 was published in the year 1949, but very
closely manages to predict technology as
modern as what we have today.
Technology in 1949
The very first Jeep
The first color TV
The microwave
The Slinky
Technology in 1984
• The first CD-ROM
• The first IBM PC
• The first disposable camera
Technology Today
• Google Glass
• Apple Watch
• iPhones
1984: World
• The world in the novel 1984 has been divided
into three superstates
• Oceania: London (specifically Airstrip One)
• Leader: Big Brother
• Inner Party: Elite Upper Class (2%)
• Outer Party: Middle Class (13%)
• Proles (Proletariat): Lower class (85%)
• Ministry of Peace(minipax):
– deals with war and defense
• Ministry of Plenty (miniplenty):
– deals with economic affairs (rationing and starvation)
• Ministry of Love (miniluv):
– deals with law and order (torture and brainwashing)
• Ministry of Truth(minitrue):
– deals with news, entertainment, education and art
Thought Police
• The Secret Police of Oceania
• It is the job of the Thought Police to uncover and
punish thoughtcrime and thought-criminals
• They use psychology and
omnipresent surveillance(such as telescreens) to
search, find, monitor and arrest members of
society who could potentially challenge authority
• They use terror and torture to achieve their ends
Winston Smith:
Our Main Character
• Outer Party member (middle class)
• Works at the Ministry of Truth (Minitrue) rewriting history (propaganda) for Big Brother
– He re-writes old newspaper articles and alters
photographs that mention “deleted people” or
“unpersons” in order to keep Big Brother in power
• Fascinated with the idea of a “true past”,
Winston begins to keep a diary…which could
get him killed.
Two-Minutes Hate
• A daily practice by the people of Oceania
where Party members must watch a film
depicting the Party's enemies (notably
Emmanuel Goldstein and his followers) and
express their hatred for them.
• Propaganda
• The controlled language of Oceania, created
to limit freedom of thought, self-expression,
individuality, and peace.
• It has limited synonyms, antonyms, and
• The government hopes to limit the words of
the people with an end goal of controlling
their thoughts
Examples of Newspeak
• Unperson: a person who has been “vaporized”
• Ownlife: the tendency to be alone. This is illegal.
• Doublethink: accepting two contradictory ideas as true
• Thoughtcrime: Socially unacceptable thoughts
• Facecrime: An indication that a person is guilty of
thoughtcrime based on their facial expression.
• Telescreen: television and security camera-like devices
used by the ruling Party in Oceania to keep its subjects
under constant surveillance
• bb: Big Brother
The Slogans of Big Brother