A few weeks ago in class, we read and discussed the article “Agents of Change: Primal War and the Collapse of Global Civilization” by Kevin Tucker. Throughout this article, Tucker argues that society as we know it is on the brink of collapsing, or possibly is already happening- we just haven’t realized it yet. As am fairly optimistic person, I would like to negate this thought and say that society is only progressing forward, but I feel like this is untrue.
Literature, especially science fiction or futuristic novels, have often depicted lifestyles in the future that have turned out to be more accurate than originally expected, even if items in the novel were unimaginable at the initial time that the novel was released. One example of this is George Orwell’s novel, “1984”. In this novel, Orwell depicted a land in which the government knows exactly what you’re doing and can punish you for it. In our lives today, we are aware of the constant monitoring by our government of our texts, emails, internet posts, etcetera, which makes the fictional lifestyles in “1984” comparable to our lifestyles today.
Looking at two trilogies set in the future that have recently become huge bestsellers and movies for young adults, readers are introduced to a concept of life after a devastating disaster to the United States. “The Hunger Games” series, by Suzanne Collins, depicts a North America divided into numerous distinct sections with specific tasks and statures in society to contribute to the country’s overall well being. Similarly, in the “Divergent” series by Veronica Roth, a government that is created after the United States as we know it to be was destroyed in a “Purity War”, divides society up into experiments, the city, government compounds, or leave people out on their own, to build up the strongest society of people possible. In the most famous “experiment”, which takes place where Chicago stands today, has the people of the experiment divided into five different “factions” that all possess different qualities and responsibilities to contribute to the society of the Chicago experiment.
So what does this mean for us? Will the United States be torn apart by disaster and will the survivors have to completely rebuild a new culture? Are we already headed full speed into this great disaster and we’re completely oblivious to what is happening to our country?
While the novels are fictional, I find it interesting, and decently unnerving, of their similarities in exposition with the United States being a completely different culture as we currently know it to be.