Dystopian novel

Definition of dystopia

Lois Lowry considers her novel The Giver to be a dystopian novel for young adults. A dystopia is the opposite of a utopia ("dys" = bad). Utopias present ideal, positive futures. In a dystopia, on the other hand, we have a future society that experience various restrictions and injustices. 

Dystopias are commonly linked with war, diseases, environmental and social crises, and totalitarian society. A society living under a totalitarian regime has its freedoms heavily restricted and lacks basic rights.

In totalitarian societies , the media and propaganda are often used as instruments of power, and people's private and emotional lives are strictly controlled. Examples of novels with dystopian elements are: Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, and Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go.  Through such novels, the authors want to warn about the developments our society can take.

At the beginning of Lowry's novel The Giver, the narrator presents an ideal and thoroughly org...

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