May 9, 2014
Distortions of the Present
Common trends through out many different science fiction novels include futuristic aspects of the world. The future is so common within the science fiction genre because it is simply a manipulated version of our modern world. Theories, such as: a zombie apocalypse, life on mars, or even extraterrestrial life, are all manipulations of ideas and events that occur in our daily lives. The future being based off of so many aspects of the present is why Samuel Delany has called it a “significant distortion of the present.”
In 2006, Max Brooks wrote World War Z; the novel is about an infection that spreads, turning civilians into zombies all over the world. As Brooks was writing the novel, there were outbreaks of many viruses – including the Avian Influenza, which spread from Asia to Europe and Africa. Events within the present time influenced many of the details and plots of the story. Brooks was highly influenced by what was happening in the world around him. People feared the spreading pandemics and did what they could to stay healthy, just as the people in World War Z would do anything to survive. The entire novel is based on how they survived the apocalypse and the fears of humanity.
Fear is the main aspect used in World War Z, which is based off of the fear that those in real life had from spreading pandemics - “I think that most people would rather face the light of a real enemy than the darkness of their imagined fears ” (Brooks 116). World War Z exploited fears that people had in the real world, while there were constant scares of illness outbreaks spreading through out the world.
In Samuel R. Delany’s, Aye, and Gomorrah and Other Stories, his settings mainly take place in the distant future. Even though many of his stories take place a hundred years from now, his “futuristic setting” is only a simple distortion of the present. Within the story, Aye, and Gomorrah, It's evident that the role of...