Ever wish you could see the future? Ever wish you could witness the course of human evolution as it speeds into the vast unknown wastelands of time?
If you say yes, then you are likely a lover of dystopian fiction, because they tackle these very questions. So, in acknowledgement of the changes dystopias illustrate towards humanity, my research concentrates on the post humanist theory and how it is connected to the YA dystopian genre. The environment or setting is often how a dystopia is characterized, however when presented in the context of the individual, I realized that what makes the society dystopian is based upon their post human characters.
My independent novel Feed by M.T. Anderson exemplifies post humanism concepts vividly, and it will be my main literary connection within my research. Posthuman literally means a person or entity that exists in a state beyond being human. This topic is fascinating, because it includes so many things that we aspire to become, yet are presented in a catastrophic way within this dystopian societies. The heritance of every generation has been to progress to new height. One of those improvements include improvement upon ourselves. However, there is a definite limit when it comes to how enhanced the human can be, and the creation of dystopias shows what happens when that limit is crossed.
I aim to expand upon 3 aspects of post humanism that serve as the cause or foundation of dystopian societies. These are enhancement, removal, and transformation, and they apply to most YA dystopian novels.
Enhancement comes in the form of body or mind modifications through scientific and artificial means. Subsequently, methods to enhancement institute the need to remove what no longer fits. Finally, when observing the posthuman within YA dystopias, alterations are often due to some environmental catastrophe or spontaneous occurrence that transforms humanity unwillingly. This causes humanity to be far from our idea of normal.
As an engineer, this topic is what captivates me most about dystopian literature, and I hope my research ignites conversation and directs more attention to the post-human theory.