Dystopian Literature

Dystopia is from the late 18th century, from dys- ‘bad’ + utopia. Oxford English Dictionary definition: "An imaginary place or condition in which everything is as bad as possible." Utopia was introduced by Sir Thomas More in his novel, Utopia (1561), a Latin word meaning "no place" or "somewhere too good to be true." The New Yorker compares the two: "A utopia is a paradise, a dystopia a paradise lost" and "Dystopias follow utopias the way thunder follows lightning." Dystopian fiction is a sub-genre of Science Fiction, in which social structures decompose.