Questions tagged [dystopia]

A dystopia is the idea of a society in a repressive and controlled state, often under the guise of being utopian, as characterized in books like Brave New World and Nineteen Eighty-Four.

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51
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1answer
4k views

Humorous essay on dystopian novel tropes

Several years ago my now-ex was in an MFA program for writing children's literature and read to me an essay she came across. I'm looking for help in finding it. The problem is that I can't remember ...
11
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1answer
209 views

Young Adult Sci-fi trilogy about a world where people can upload their minds but if they die in the simulation they'll die in the real world

I read this book in 2018/2019. It's a young adult science fiction trilogy about a world where people can upload their minds and consciousness to a simulated computer world and interact with others. If ...
5
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1answer
103 views

Novel series with ritual cannibalism and flesh essential for life

Reminded by a recent question asking for SciFi books with cannibalism in them. I am looking for a novel series (I think 3-5 books) that I read about 5-6 years ago, and I think it will have been ...
5
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2answers
122 views

Looking for a dystopian sci-fi book in which the story is told through various characters' perspectives and people are hosts to some sort of infection [duplicate]

There are really only two characters I remember: a military man and a girl. The girl lived in a camp with other survivors or people who weren't hosts (or brainwashed- I can't exactly remember). A ...
11
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1answer
119 views

A book from the 70s/80s; boy breaks out of his dreary city life to find the country as bad [duplicate]

Was taught in UK schools in the 80s. The city was a grubby but sterile environment with the usual tropes of bloody sports and I think high tech policing: then, through a big old fence was the country,...
7
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1answer
277 views

Science fiction story about a dystopian society where fertility is strictly regulated

I read this story as a teenager. It was about a dystopian future where people lived in buildings with contraceptive gas. When they got permission to become parents, they would leave the city. The ...
11
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4answers
475 views

Dystopian book where rich people use technology to temporarily inhabit the bodies of the poor

I'm trying to find a book that a friend of mine read. He does not know the title nor the author's name. Here is how he described it: It was a dystopian society where I guess the poor live underground, ...
9
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1answer
1k views

Guy gets mugged, then his corporation sponsors the gang?

A novel series from the 90s or possibly late 80s. Thought the title was something like Boedekker's Demons, but I think I got the name mangled. Corporate dystopia where a guy gets mugged but then turns ...
4
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0answers
120 views

Comic book series about dystopian child regime

My memories are somewhat vague on this one. I remember receiving 2 volumes of this series from my aunt when I was a child (somewhere around 10 - I'm now 21). The two books were set in a world that ...
8
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0answers
87 views

Novel about Los Angeles doll museum run by feminist collective

I read a dystopian novel set in decaying Los Angeles about a Barbie museum. But there was a collective living there building an archive about violence against women below ground. There was a horrible ...
12
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1answer
515 views

YA fiction 1980 - society living in underground caverns [duplicate]

I’ve read through many of the similar questions but I have not found the answer and I have more details. I’ve been looking for this book for almost 30 years. The main character is a youth and I ...
7
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1answer
517 views

Book where aliens live in an ocean contained in a special camp

I read this book a while ago and I forgot the name. The cover has a big Ferris wheel on it. The main character is a girl and she lives in a small apartment thing with her mom and her dad and basically ...
11
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1answer
2k views

Story about a scientist who invents truth serum

I took an undergraduate literature course around 2005. My required anthology (now lost) had a science fiction story I would love to find again. The anthology only had excerpts and a brief discussion, ...
6
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1answer
170 views

Sci-fi book with a deaf/mute main character and implant headphones

I'm looking for a sci-fi/dystopian book with a deaf/mute main character. I read it in French, 10-15 years ago, but I have no idea of its original publishing date. I can't remember anything about the ...
16
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1answer
186 views

Apocalyptic VR Short Story where a girl experiences glitches in her reality

Hoping to identify a short story I read in a sci-fi anthology in the late 1980s: no character names, I'm afraid, but the plot was along these lines: a girl (probably!) lives in a "normal" ...
9
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1answer
496 views

Story written in the 80s, appeared in Analog or Fantasy & Science Fiction

I need some help tracking a story that I thought I had on the shelf but didn't. Let me outline the plot, and some details I recall really well, I think it was called Trader's Oath but my google search ...
26
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1answer
4k views

Story about a girl who discovers she lives in an “exhibition” and manages to escape to Indianapolis/Minneapolis [duplicate]

If I recall correctly, the story describes life on the American frontier, but the characters soon realise there's a world outside and that they're essentially living in an exhibition. The characters ...
4
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1answer
230 views

Anime about a city where you must not lose your mask, otherwise you lose your face

I remember the first chapter where the main character is visiting a city with his/her pet (I don’t remember the gender or if the pet was a human). The thing is you don’t have to lose your mask because ...
6
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0answers
139 views

Dystopian sci-fi story, ink disappears from books, all books must be read out-loud

I'm looking for a dystopian sci-fi story where something (probably nano-machines) makes the ink in books disappear; thus depriving humanity of its history, knowledge, and culture. This prompts a rule ...
3
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1answer
78 views

Short story: limited life spans, arm tattoos, gang of kids on minibikes [duplicate]

This is from an dystopian anthology I read in the early 1970's. The world is run-down and brutal, reminiscent of Soylent Green / Make Room Make Room. Everyone has a tattoo on their arm indicating ...
13
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2answers
2k views

Film (possibly made for TV) where everyone wears a headset which controls thoughts by suppressing IQ [duplicate]

Film set in USA where everyone wears a headset which controls thoughts by suppressing IQ. Everything is a copy of 1950s, even cars & clothes. Hero discovers the truth and is told by interrogator ...
7
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1answer
216 views

Futuristic dystopia book where kids have superpowers and were fighting in a war for their countries; had multiple character point of views

The book had a red cover and the synopsis said something like “what would you do if your country told you you were the key to winning the war?” The main boy character in the story had powers similar ...
29
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1answer
3k views

90s (or earlier) short story concerning two mathematicians and “dark numbers”

I think I read this short story 20, 30 years ago. The story concerns two mathematicians in a dark dystopian future. The one is struggling with some project, and can't figure out how to get the thing ...
8
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1answer
134 views

90s biopunk novel about near future genetic engineering

The novel is set against the backdrop of an economic collapse in the near future US. At one point a demonstration for a bailout is used as cover for a terrorist attack. There's a character who's a ...
0
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2answers
135 views

Short story set in an apocalyptic or post apocalyptic type setting of an abandoned cityscape

I remember reading this short story in middle school (2009-2011). I think it was set in an abandoned underground subway in NYC, but we don't find that out at all. The way everything is described makes ...
12
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2answers
2k views

Short story about AI robot who kills all humans except a small group [duplicate]

Trying to remember the title of a short story about an AI robot computer who kills all humans out of resentment, but keeps a small group to torture. The group consists of one loner, who eventually ...
4
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1answer
160 views

Short story dystopia about a state that enforces healthy living

I am looking for a short story I read some time in the 90ies in a German anthology. The story itself could be from the seventies, eighties or nineties. As far as I remember the author was an Italian. ...
6
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1answer
76 views

Graphic novel following a female character getting recruited into a revolutionary anti establishment type war

In the early 90’s I was exposed to a graphic novel at my local library. The content was post apocalyptic or dystopian and focused on a black female heroine who I think had a name that followed an ...
7
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1answer
161 views

Dystopian manga set in a post industrial world where old technology is forbidden and everything is steam/air powered

English, Primarily B/W with those "Key Scene" colored pages. Set in a post industrial world where old technology is forbidden and everything is steam/air powered. Has flying ships (boats that fly), ...
18
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0answers
312 views

Man accidentally hired into government position, uncovers an attempted alien invasion

This is a book science fiction story. A man was accidentally hired into a (secret?) government position due to having the same exact name as their intended hire. I don't remember, is he required to ...
12
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1answer
188 views

Short online story in which protagonist is the last holdout against advertising products to friends

I read this online in the '90s or 2000s. The male protagonist is a counterculture artistic type who talks about how they and their friends throw all the most coveted parties. In the larger culture, ...
53
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2answers
7k views

A universe not quite like ours

Okay this is a story someone else was telling me about. I wanted to read it but he didn't remember the title. This was in the mid-eighties; the story itself must be at least that old. The protagonist ...
6
votes
2answers
260 views

Dystopian novel, main female character escapes a which factory marks girls with numbers

I read the first few chapters of this book around late 2014 to early 2015. I found it during my senior year in my English teacher's personal book collection for our class. I distinctly remember the ...
1
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1answer
219 views

A Dystopian Anti-Consumerist Novel

I'm trying to remember a recently-published sci fi novel where all consumer decisions are made for you by predictive ai; for example, products you are predicted to want are automatically purchased and ...
18
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1answer
278 views

Looking for a Science Fiction book on dystopian future about an AI controlled city

I'm searching for a book I've read during the mid-90s in German. But I think the book was older, maybe classic Science Fiction and was translated from English. What I remember from the plot: It ...
34
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1answer
6k views

Really bizarre dystopian children’s film with hundreds of young boys forced to play piano

There’s a bizarre kids' movie from the 60s (maybe earlier or later) where an evil man has a huge piano that he forces hundreds of young boys to play constantly. I remember a shot of it showing that it ...
8
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1answer
381 views

Movie where a woman escapes from a dream pod into a red-sand filled world

This movie starts out with a young girl who is sleeping in this kind of pod that gives people dreams. This is a post-apocalyptic kind of dystopian world. She hates the dream world and wants to get out....
7
votes
1answer
281 views

80’s book where people had chips in their brains to do jobs

I remember reading a book in the early 80's with the whole chip in the brain theme. You'd goto work, and put a chip in your brain, and you'd get your day's work done. At the end, you'd take the chip ...
5
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0answers
205 views

Dystopian novel about women and men being separated

This is essentially a third-hand search, sorry. As the title states, I'm looking for information on a novel (published in the '80s possibly) or short story about a dystopian future in which women are ...
7
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0answers
162 views

70s or earlier story about a future where everyone is NOT equal

I was reminded of this story I read long ago by this question: Short story about a future where everyone is equal Unfortunately, it is just possible that this particular story was a french original....
38
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2answers
5k views

Novel set in the future, children cannot change the class they are born into, one class is made uneducated by associating books with pain

The world is a world where children are born into a class, and they cannot change it. For example, some children are radiated in the womb, so that they do not want to move to a cold climate, so that ...
15
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1answer
396 views

Families escape from a dystopic Earth on a starship, but turn on each other during the trip

I read this novel about 20 years ago, and I'd like to identify it. In the not so distant future, Earth society is collapsing due to rampant violence, crime, sociopathy and so on (the problems are ...
4
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1answer
214 views

Book: dystopian future with games and sex changes [duplicate]

I am trying to recall a book I read quite a while back. The book revolved around people that no longer faced death I believe as, of I remember correctly, one of the main characters was well over one ...
12
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2answers
381 views

Near future dystopian USA where rampant disinformation has destroyed “truth”

A few months ago I listened to a radio emission introducing a new book from a known sci-fi author. I thought it sounded really interesting, unfortunately, I don't remember the name of the author, book ...
9
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1answer
312 views

Movie about cop with a control chip in his head which breaks

In the 90s or early 00s I watched a film about a corporation who controlled society. All citizens had a chip in their heads, that substitutes and decors their reality. For example, a future style city ...
5
votes
1answer
134 views

Podcast story about woman wanting to destroy machine distributing emotionally destructive ads

I remember listening to a story, probably on Escape Pod but possibly Lightspeed, about a near future in which ubiquitous machine-generated gendered advertisements, crueler than anything that could be ...
9
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1answer
165 views

Short dystopian novel about boy who lives on streets [duplicate]

I may not remember enough for this question to be answered. I read this book 2 years ago; I grabbed it from a classroom library because I needed a book to read. It was definitely on the older end - ...
18
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1answer
320 views

Dystopia where people are regularly forced to move, protagonist must move daily

I'm trying to remember a title of a paperback book I read over 30 years ago. It was set in a dystopian future where the whole of the Earth's society was constantly being moved around the Earth. The ...
12
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1answer
213 views

Dystopian trilogy: dying Earth, wealthy people living in orbital stations, main character goes on the ground and is trapped there because of a war

I would like to reread a fantastic novel (actually a trilogy). The Earth is dying consumed by war and eco problems. Some people live wealthy in orbital stations. That's where the main character ...
9
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1answer
207 views

Dystopian Arthouse film about a man making a robot in a dystopian destroyed city

I found a movie a while ago that I just can not remember the name of. It was centered around a man in a dystopian destroyed city who was making a robot in his basement. He makes the robot look like ...

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