By analyzing the characteristics and meaning of dystopia in Korean juvenile science fiction, this study aims to search for the principles of juvenile literature responding to the contradictions of scientific technologism in collusion with state capitalism, and to consider its limitations and significance.
This study focuses on the juvenile science fiction in which children or teenagers fight against system dystopia functioning as a setting of the story. System dystopia consists of ‘fake utopia’ and ‘concentration camps’ holding those excluded from this ‘fake utopia’. Young people whose right to life are violated under the system dystopia escape from concentration camps and fight against political power. We don’t have many novels that have focused on environmental dystopia, but a nomadic subject is found in works set on Earth after environmental pollution or nuclear explosion.
In short, juvenile dystopia science fiction deepens the contradictions of the hierarchical society based on scientific technologism, criticizing the repressive, material-oriented and differential educational realities of our society. They hope that children or teenagers will act as a resistance that sees through the deception and hypocrisy of the social system. These works are significant in that they expose the biopolitics strategy of political power in collusion with industrial capitalism and induce us to reflect on it. However, it seems to be the limit of humanism to equate human life with nature and to warn of dangers of technology, machinery, and material civilization as the counterpart.
This paper has the significance of taking a general survey of juvenile dystopia science fiction since the 2000s, and revealing the writers’ perception of scientific technologism and its limitations.