Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is an example of a literature imagined future. The location of this imagined future is in Los Angeles, although the time period is ambiguous. It was published in 1953, in relation to current events such as the McCarthy hearings and the result of world war II. In his novel, Bradbury describes a futuristic American city in which books including any type of literature, are banned. Books are not only banned in this society, but are repeatedly burned. In addition to this, creative thinking, meaningful thinking, and spending time alone is not orchestrated.
As for books,“Guy Montag is a fireman who burns books…” (Sparknotes). So, in this imagined society books are burned by firemen themselves. It is up to Guy Montag the protagonist of this novel, to help his city as various destruction is occurring. He must realize his full potential and meaning of life, involving the value of literature. Luckily he meets renegade intellectuals and other intelligent people such as a retired Professor, who inform him of their way of life. In a city with no intellect or meaning, personalities seem dramatically bland. I found this novel I read in high school to be an amazing example of an imagined future, because if we removed books or any sort of intellect what would our society be? Bradbury gives a clear overview of how destructive life in a non-intellect valueless world would be, possibly leading to war.
An example of a “imagined future” takes place in George Orwell’s novel 1984. Although, we are way passed the 1900’s Orwell’s novel is interesting in many ways. First of all he published this book in 1948 and imagined his own vision of what the world would look like in 36 years. Orwell imagined this dystopian society where everything seems at ease and organized but is that really the case? The novel’s only prominent protagonist, Winston Smith realizes that society is not normal at all. Everything is controlled by a force termed, ‘big brother’. Big brother is never seen but is the party leader. The most famous line from the books is “big brother is watching you”. Winston realizes that he is trapped in a surveillance society where everything is recorded and seen and there is no privacy.
Now this is interesting because what Orwell imagined is very common with today’s society. With all the social media and technology that we have today as compared to 1984 or 1948 is tremendous. Our entire lives are almost spent on social media and this can be a tricky thing. Anyone can see what we do, we may think that our private browsing is kept “private” but that is not the case. In terms of surveillance, we have cameras on almost every street corner, in schools, in offices…etc. You can go on google maps and search and address and actually see it on your screen. It’s amazing how accurate Orwell was in terms of what he imagined to be our future. It may just be me but I do believe the government is big brother and the government can see everything that we do.
One example from literature or pop culture of an imagined future is Susan Ee, “Angelfall.” The series Penryn & the End of Days follows Penryn as she overcomes obstacles in the Apocalypse. From the beginning of the book, you are able to imagine the world Susan Ee created. Penryn is not the typical protagonist, she is a half-starved teenager with a disabled sister. Penryn’s mother also deal with her own psychological issues, making Penryn the one in charge. Susan Ee shows how modern location have changed because of the apocalypse. Locations that are well known become the main bases of the warrior angels.
The story takes place in the distant California, where 6 weeks ago angels of the apocalypse came to destroy the world. During the day, street gangs terrorize the people. Penyrn’s sister gets abducted by warrior angels and she will do anything to get her back. Penryn eventually teams up with Raffe, a wingless warrior angel. Raffe goes with Penryn to the center base of the angels to find a way to put back his wings.
The development of new technologies, social media is taking an important place in our everyday life. People, especially young, are intensely monitoring their world and their peer’s. They constantly feel the need to see and know what their friends do about their life and to be seeing and approved by their friends also. The rapidity in which information is shared nowadays makes it almost impossible to catch up with daily information and news. This advancement also plays an invaluable role in the way information is shared around the world; it connects the world of information and allows people from everywhere to get the same news at the same time. One of the most important examples is Twitter. Twitter played a big in the Arab Spring that started in 2010 in Tunisia and sprayed across the Arab world. In times where information is crucial, in the future, information will change the way people interact and will considerably bring change to the world.
My example of an imagined future in literature would be the imagined future in the book Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. Ender’s Game is set in the future predicting an imperiled society after conflicts with an insectoid alien species. Children are trained to combat a third invasion by these species. The novel explores interplanetary spaceflights and alien species. The novel has received appreciation and criticism both alike. It is a great fantasy fiction novel that will transport you to another space and time.
Ender’s Game is the story of Ender Wiggin, a child genius chosen to save the world. The military needs a brilliant commander to fight buggers, alien enemies who have previously come close to wiping out humanity. Before he can face the enemy, however, Ender must make it through Battle School, where he learns that hatred is not reserved for the buggers alone. Battle School is where the best and brightest are trained to be military commanders through participation in intricate war games. Card’s writing allows the frenzied feel of the games to permeate the book, and Ender’s trials accelerate as time begins to run out for humanity. Because Ender is the most brilliant military mind that Battle School has ever seen, his success earns him the resentment of most of his peers. He has only himself to rely on, although his small core of loyal friends is there for him in more ways than Ender knows.By placing the fate of the world in the hands of a child, Card challenges traditional assumptions both about children and war. Ender may be small, but he thinks, feels, and acts like an adult, and an exceptional one at that.
Arriving at Battle School, Ender quickly and easily masters increasingly difficult war games, distinguishing himself and winning respect amongst his peers. Ender is soon ordained by Graff as the military’s next great hope, resulting in his promotion to Command School. Once there, he’s trained by Mazer Rackham, himself, to lead his fellow soldiers into an epic battle that will determine the future of Earth and save the human race.
An example of a literature I found of an imagined future is called I Live in the Future & Here’s How It Works by Nick Bilton. He focuses on technology, media, and social interactions and how this is all going to change in our future. He says that the 21sst century is just the beginning of the horrors to come. Now with everyone constantly on their phones technology is just going to keep on increasing. Where technology replaces technology. We are going to be in a world where technology is going to be so in our lives we are going to depend on it to live and it will also start changing our brains. He gave an example that soon surgeons who play more video games will perform better at their job then those who don’t. Information in the fictional future is at your fingertips even more then it is now. Information is going to be forced in our lives everyday with the increase of technology.
My example of an imagined future in pop culture would be the dystopian future in The Divergent Series. The Divergent Series is a book series, but it is currently being made into movies. The setting takes place in Chicago in the future. The series contains many aspects of classism and classification. The world is divided into five factions with their own meanings: Erudite(knowledgeable), Candor(honesty), Amity(peacefulness), Dauntless(bravery), and Abnegation(selflessness). There is also a place for those who do not fit in with the factions and that population is called the Factionless. The people who fall into one of the categories are placed in their correct group. The information is basically restricted because the people have been programmed to only possess the characteristics that align with their group. For example, those in the Candor faction can’t lie and always have to be honest; they are programmed to tell the truth. The factions exist because the people in power, those belonging to the Erudite faction(the knowledgeable people), don’t want the population to possess the characteristics people possess today; they would be considered too powerful and dangerous. The entire concept of the series has to do with information because those in authority want to keep as much information as they can away from the population, so they take away each person’s true nature and strip them down to their best characteristics. Everything about everyone is in the hands of those with the most knowledge. The technology is advanced and there is a high emphasis on science and technology.