Science Fiction Essay, Research Paper
People are always looking for a good way to escape the pangs of work. Since work is so important in society today that it is almost impossible to avoid doing work without having to pay the price in the future. The perfect escape would be one that alleviates the strain of work yet does not incur any future expenses. Many people have found science fiction novels and movies to be great escape mechanisms. Science fiction is such a perfect escape for many people because it allows its audience to vicariously experience the joy of future technology technology that promises less work and much more play, at no cost.
An escape must have three things in order to be considered a true escape. First, an escape must permanently or at least temporarily eliminate one s responsibilities. As long as one has responsibilities looming overhead, one cannot really feel free. It will also work if the escape produces the illusion that one s responsibilities are gone. Secondly, an escape must enhance leisure. If the escape does not enhance leisure then boredom will most likely be the result. Also, due to the fact that most escapes are the temporary kind, leisure time is generally very precious. Therefore, it is not enough that an escape simply do away with work and responsibility. An escape must also take full advantage of one s leisure time.
Third, an escape must not have any undesirable consequences. This is the condition that justifies the escape itself. Suppose for example that a person became tired of his or her job and simply stopped working. That person would soon be fired, and although he did avoid doing work, his method of escape cannot be justified because of the undesirable consequences that followed. This is perhaps the most important condition an escape must satisfy.
Science fiction literature and films are very good escape mechanisms. While a person is absorbed in the goings on within a particular novel, movie, etc., that person can experience what the characters are experiencing, and it is common for the characters to have lifestyles that meet the three conditions above. The reason for this is that in science fiction it is very common for the characters to have a very technologically advanced way of living. The futuristic technology allows the characters to do less work and have more fun with no consequences. Take for example the movie Star Wars.
Due to the advanced technology in Star Wars, the main character Luke Skywalker has very little work to do compared with what the average person has to do nowadays. This is because Luke Skywalker has an array of different droids, or robots, that will do all of his work for him. In Star Wars, Luke doesn t have to walk or even drive. He flies wherever he wants to go. When people watch Star Wars they temporarily become involved in a world where work has been made extremely simple. For a short period of time the audience forgets what the real world is like and has thus escaped.
Luke also seems to be having more fun than most of us as well. In Star Wars the characters fly ships and shoot lasers for fun. The advanced technology allows those characters to do things and see things that only a few of us could ever imagine. However, when we are watching Star Wars, we become involved so much so that we experience the fun that the characters are experiencing. We forget for awhile that we are on earth and that we cannot fly spaceships.
The best thing about the science fiction experience is that there are no undesirable consequences that stem from doing less work and having more leisure time. In reality, people generally have to pay the price when they do less work and engage in more play. However, when we are involved in science fiction there are no undesirable consequences that we must face. If Luke Skywalker stopped working one day, he would not get fired. He would just use a few more droids. As we watch Star Wars all we know is that all of a sudden work became much easier, fun became much more thrilling, and as opposed to reality, we do not have to face the consequences of doing no work and having no responsibilities.
This is why science fiction is such a great escape mechanism. The characters in science fiction have lifestyles that meet the three conditions of a true escape. When people read or watch science fiction they can forget about reality for a short period of time and experience the life of the characters. As they experience the life of the characters they experience the feeling of escape.