Dystopian Ways of Life

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In the book Across the Universe by Beth Revis, the main characters Amy and Elder both face challenges regarding leadership and differences in a dystopian world. Dystopia is a way of life in which the world is created to be a perfect society. Revis, through an exaggerated worst-case scenario, describes a dystopian world. Revis portrays the dystopian world through elements consisting of citizens conforming to uniform expectations and qualities, inhabitants living in a dehumanized state, and the people being led by one specific, tyrant leader named Eldest. First, Revis describes the citizens occupying the ship Godspeed as being one race without many differences. After the main character Amy wakes up from being frozen for two hundred and fifty years, she is in a meeting with the doctor of the ship and questions why everyone aboard looks the same. The doctor replies with, “’We’re monoethic . . . We all share the same physical features – skin, hair, and eye color’” (103). This exemplifies the dystopian element of uniform expectations and qualities because the people all very similar. Revis criticizes equality throughout the book by giving examples of how it can lead to disharmony between two persons. For instance, as Amy leaves the hospital for the first time, she is spotted by other ship members, one of whom asks her, “’What are you?’. . . Not who. What” (136). When the man says this to Amy, he treats her like an animal. Revis chastises the idea of balance and uniformity between groups of people. She relates to the idealism of everyone wanting to be equal; however, she brings up the ideas of what would occur if in fact everyone was the same. Furthermore, this idea of equality then leads to the dystopian element of living in ... ... middle of paper ... ...e tries to defy him, they are punished. The dystopian way of life is brought about in this book by Eldest being a dictator. The means of dystopian elements and ways of life are criticized through multiple techniques throughout the book Across the Universe by Beth Revis. These means include the citizens being similar and conforming to each other, existing in a state that is not human and/or normal, and being led by a dictator. The author criticizes equality and leadership. This affects me because I know several people who would do anything just to be like others and fit in. Also, I have encountered people who have to be in control of everything no matter what it takes. Revis points out that these ideas can lead to discord among us. Dystopian novels help the reader see how idealism can lead to unease and instability in one’s life and the world around them.
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