Dystopian Revision Pack - Year 13

Tasks:

1. Create a timeline of dystopian literature considering how it has changed

2. Create a timeline of historical events- consider politics and the time of writing HMT and 1984

3. Create a timeline of technological advances and their effect on the public.

 

Write a critical appreciation of this passage, relating your discussion to your reading of dystopian literature. (30)

 

"Ah."  Beatty leaned forward in the faint mist of smoke from his pipe.  "What more easily explained and natural?  With school turning out more runners, jumpers, racers, tinkerers, grabbers, snatchers, fliers, and swimmers instead of examiners, critics, knowers, and imaginative creators, the word 'intellectual,' of course, became the swear word it deserved to be.  You always dread the unfamiliar.  Surely you remember the boy in your own school class who was exceptionally 'bright,' did most of the reciting and answering while the others sat like so many leaden idols, hating him.  And wasn't it this bright boy you selected for beatings and tortures after hours?  Of course it was.  We must all be alike.  Not everyone born free and equal, as the Constitution says, but everyone made equal.  Each man the image of every other; then all are happy, for there are no mountains to make them cower, to judge themselves against.  So!  A book is a loaded gun in the house next door.  Burn it.  Take the shot from the weapon.  Breach man's mind.  Who knows who might be the target of the well-read man?  Me?  I won't stomach them for a minute.  And so when houses were finally fireproofed completely, all over the world (you were correct in your assumption the other night) there was no longer need of firemen for the old purposes.  They were given the new job, as custodians of our peace of mind, the focus of our understandable and rightful dread of being inferior; official censors, judges, and executors.  That's you, Montag, and that's me."

 

Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451 (1953)

 

Write a critical appreciation of this passage, relating your discussion to your reading of dystopian literature. (30)

 

The old man said something about clipping his words, and made him repeat this a third time. "Fighting and slaying, and weapons in hand, and fools bawling freedom and the like," said the old man. "Not in all my life has there been that. These are like the old days—for sure—when the Paris people broke out—three gross of years ago. That's what I mean hasn't been. But it's the world's way. It had to come back. I know. I know. This five years Ostrog has been working, and there has been trouble and trouble, and hunger and threats and high talk and arms. Blue canvas and murmurs. No one safe. Everything sliding and slipping. And now here we are! Revolt and fighting, and the Council come to its end."

"You are rather well-informed on these things," said Graham.

"I know what I hear. It isn't all Babble Machine with me."

"No," said Graham, wondering what Babble Machine might be. "And you are certain this Ostrog—you are certain Ostrog organised this rebellion and arranged for the waking of the Sleeper? Just to assert himself—because he was not elected to the Council?

"Everyone knows that, I should think," said the old man. "Except—just fools. He meant to be master somehow. In the Council or not. Everyone who knows anything knows that. And here we are with dead bodies lying in the dark! Why, where have you been if you haven't heard all about the trouble between Ostrog and the Verneys? And what do you think the troubles are about? The Sleeper? Eh? You think the Sleeper's real and woke of his own accord—eh?"

"I'm a dull man, older than I look, and forgetful," said Graham. "Lots of things that have happened—especially of late years—. If I was the Sleeper, to tell you the truth, I couldn't know less about them."

"Eh!" said the voice. "Old, are you? You don't sound so very old! But its not everyone keeps his memory to my time of life—truly. But these notorious things! But you're not so old as me—not nearly so old as me. Well! I ought not to judge other men by myself, perhaps. I'm young—for so old a man. Maybe you're old for so young."

 

H.G. Wells The Sleeper Wakes  (1899)

Write a critical appreciation of this passage, relating your discussion to your reading of dystopian literature. (30)

 

 

 

Comparative essay questions:

 

  1. ‘Dystopian texts have a moral message’ by comparing ‘Nineteen Eighty- Four’ with at least one other text prescribed for this topic discuss how far you agree with this view.

  2. ‘Female characters often have a limited role or limited power in dystopian fiction.’ By comparing ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ and one other text prescribed for this topic discuss how far you agree with this view.

  3. ‘Lack of freedom and government control are common themes in dystopian literature’ by comparing ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ with at least one other text prescribed for this topic discuss how far you agree with this view.

  4. ‘Dystopian fiction is more of a warning than a prophecy’ by comparing ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four ‘ with at least one other text prescribed for this topic discuss how far you agree with this view.

 

Alternative interpretations

 

Attwood essay (modern)

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/books/review/margaret-atwood-handmaids-tale-age-of-trump.html

Read this essay on ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ download the doc and read pages 11-17 https://canlit.ca/full-issue/?issue=112