Education dystopia #2: cyberpunk world

by VanessaVaile

Bryan Alexander

What are some bad futures for teaching, learning, and campuses? With this post I’m continuing my series of educational dystopias.

2: Cyberpunk world

This is close to the future imagined by cyberpunk science fiction writers back in the 1980s and 1990s.  Looked at creatively and from the perspective of 2014, these stories don’t look too fantastic.  They described a world saturated by technology, hyper-globalized, economically split between the super-wealthy and the poor, and politically chaotic.  Distributed, often networked technology is ubiquitous.  Surveillance is the norm, both corporate and governmental.

Animated eye from Blade Runner
Let’s take this a little further.  In such a dystopia nation-states are relatively destabilized, their powers sapped by corporations and other non-state actors.  Companies have achieved a great deal of regulatory capture, wielding extensive influence on public policy.  Political resistance is rare, so we see more dissent, rebellion, and subversion expressed through technological means.

This world experiences more rapid technological and cultural…

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