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Lecture 2

Political Science 2142A/B Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Blue Mass, Totalitarianism


Department
Political Science
Course Code
Political Science 2142A/B
Professor
Alison Meek
Lecture
2

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Exploring dystopian characteristics through film
o What would a perfect society look like?
Utopia: a place, state, or condition that is ideally perfect in respect of politics,
laws, customs, and conditions
Matrix (1999)
o Construct, load anything we need
o Inside a computer program
o Residual self image: the mental projection of your digital self
o What is real? How do you define real?
o Is what your senses feel real? Or is it just electrical signals interpreted by
your brain?
o Neural interactive simulation, leaving in a dream world, the matrix
o Artifical Intelligence: singular consciousness that was dependant on solar
power
o Human history has been dependant on machines to surprise
o Fate is not without a sense of irony
o What is the matrix? It is control, change a human being into a battery
o You have the look of a man who accepts what he sees because he is
expecting to wake up
o Neo doesn’t believe in fate, doesn’t like the idea not in control of your life
o Matrix is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from
the truth
o Slave, born into a prison you cannot smell, taste, touch. Prison for your
mind
o Blue pill: story ends, wake up in bed believe whatever you want to believe
o Red pill: stay in wonderland, see how deep the rabbit hole goes
o Part of the system, are the enemy before they are saved
o Dependant on the system so they will fight to protect it
o Gatekeepers are everyone and no one
Dystopia: a futuristic, imagined universe in which oppressive societal control
and the illusion of a perfect society are maintained through corporate,
bureaucratic, technological, moral, or totalitarian control. Dystopias, through an
exaggerated worst-case scenario, make a criticism about a current trend, societal
norm, or political system
Characteristics of a dystopian society:
o Propaganda is used to control the citizens of society
o Information, independent thought, and freedom are restricted
o A figurehead or concept is worshipped by the citizens of the of society
o Citizens are perceived to be under constant surveillance
o Citizens have a fear of the outside world
o Citizens live in a dehumanized state
o The natural world is banished and distrusted
o Citizens conform to uniform expectations. Individuality and dissent are
bad
o The society is an illusion of a perfect utopian world
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