From extraterrestrials, technological advances and intergalactic journeys, to the exploration of different realities, universes and states of consciousness, science fiction has everything necessary to feed the imagination of any reader. Among the hundreds of books considered for this list, we select a few ‘classics’ of the genre that have surpassed the category of literary work and their ideas exposed have come to directly influence our society, even to describe the future with decades of anticipation.
The novel has been one of the most influential works in today’s society and pop culture, inventing the concept “Big Brother” that controls, sees, listens and manages to do everything it wants. Set in the midst of a self-monitoring totalitarian state, the book shows the consequences of living under a government that controls every aspect of our lives; from personal privacy to the very reasoning and critical thinking of every citizen. Published in 1949, it would appear that Orwell had a look to the future and described several issues that are still relevant today and threaten our quality of life as free human beings.
The Ender game
The story of a young man involved in an intergalactic game where it is impossible to win without losing something. The child is trained by the government to become a formidable commander against an extraterrestrial race that wants to destroy the Earth. The technological advances, military formations and strategies of the boy genius star in this exciting plot full of simulations and games.
Do androids dream of electric sheep?
This novel by the prestigious science fiction writer, Phillip K. Dick, was the direct influence for the famous film, Blade Runner. Set in a post-apocalyptic cyberpunk environment, Rick Deckard is a mercenary hunter with the task of capturing rebellious androids, these creations blur the line between natural and synthetic, imitating humans to perfection. The work was ahead of topics such as robotics, artificial intelligence, human rights to non-human and travel between space colonies where all races seek better living conditions after a world war that has extinguished millions of people and species.
A space odyssey,
You probably know the film by director Stanley Kubrick, who personally collaborated with Clarke to make the film and novel complementary works of art. The book, full of symbolism and metaphorical resources, narrates the origin of man from prehistoric times to his technologically advanced space travels and contact with extraterrestrial beings. Of all the subjects shown, they dominate, what motivates man to prosper? What is the purpose of his existence? How will technology affect the course of our lives? The dimensions are grandiose, the narrative is immense, and the images described are unique in this masterpiece that questions the intellectual and existential fiber of the human race.
The novel, turned into a film by David Lynch, is part of an epic saga with an account of thousands of years and dozens of characters involved in interplanetary wars, love stories and space travel. Despite being categorized as “science fiction,” the plot unfolds in a fantasy world where the one who controls a specific energy resource will have greater power and dominance in the recognized galaxies. The messianic figures, witches, villains and emperors will manifest in the desert planet of Dune to unwrap a plot full of politics, economy and even love, dealing with current issues such as terrorism and ecology in the cosmic struggle for the highest source of energy in the universe.