Welcome to Science Fiction 101! In this course, we will engage in an online, collaborative book club. There are three novels that you can be assigned to.
This week, please review each of the novels and rank them from what you want to read most to what you want to read least.
The story takes place in an imagined future in an unspecified year believed to be 1984, when much of the world is in perpetual war. Great Britain, now known as Airstrip One, has become a province of the totalitarian superstate Oceania, which is led by Big Brother, a dictatorial leader supported by an intense cult of personality manufactured by the Party’s Thought Police. The Party engages in omnipresent government surveillance and, through the Ministry of Truth, historical negationism and constant propaganda to persecute individuality and independent thinking.
Largely set in a futuristic World State, whose citizens are environmentally engineered into an intelligence-based social hierarchy, the novel anticipates huge scientific advancements in reproductive technology, sleep-learning, psychological manipulation and classical conditioning that are combined to make a dystopian society which is challenged by the story’s protagonist.
It presents an American society where books have been personified and outlawed and “firemen” burn any that are found. The novel follows in the viewpoint of Guy Montag, a fireman who soon becomes disillusioned with his role of censoring literature and destroying knowledge, eventually quitting his job and committing himself to the preservation of literary and cultural writings.
Submit your rankings here. You will be randomly assigned to a book. I will try my hardest to take your selections into account, but there are no guarantees you will be assigned to your top choice.
Please start reading your books this week. You should have completed a third of your book by the end of Week 2.
As you read, write down some question ideas for your first virtual book club meeting with your book team. You can use this as a guide: Ultimate List of Book Club Discussion Questions.
Read through at least two-thirds of your assigned book.
Hold your first book club discussion. Remember to prep for your report while in your discussion.
Your collaborative book report can be done on any collaborative platform. Some ideas are Canva (search for book report templates), Prezi, or Google Slides. Be creative!
Complete your book and hold another book club discussion. Use this time to continue your book report.
This is presentation week! You will be presenting during an online remote meeting session, so be sure to practice your presentation as a team on a similar platform before your final presentation.
Creativity is great for this presentation. Be interactive and engaging! Share thoughts from your book club discussions and pose thought-provoking questions about some of the most lauded dystopian science fiction literature of the last century.