Recurrent Dystopian themes in Scott Westerfelds Novel Uglies


The genre of dystopian fiction has been largely studied, and a significant number of contributions explain its main themes and features. Plus, this type of literature is still strongly developed at present, with a several titles among the best sold. Scott Westerfelds Uglies series (2005-2007), which can be found in this sort of works, is an example of recent dystopian literature which enjoys a large number of readers. The aim of this research is to determine whether Westerfeld develops in his first text of the series, Uglies (2005), a suggestion of recurrent themes in dystopian fiction. This can show to what extent Westerfeld frames his piece of fiction into a traditional dystopian setting. The results of this study, thus, can shed some light on the characteristics of 21st century dystopian fiction, which are to be compared with the traditional definition of the genre.

Keywords: Dystopian; Westerfeld; Uglies; Young-Adult-Fiction.

Full Text:



Bradbury, R. (2008). Fahrenheit 451. London: Harper Collins.

Carpenter, S. (2012). Not Just for Kids: 'Insurgent' by Veronica Roth. Los Angeles Times, 6th May 2012. Web. 10 January 2014


Claeys, G. (2011). The origins of dystopia: Wells, Huxley and Orwell. In G. Claeys (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Utopian Literature (pp. 107-131). Cambridge: Cambridge U.P.

Collins, S. (2011). The Hunger Games. London: Scholastic.

Collins, S. (2009). Catching Fire. New York: Scholastic.

Craig, A. (2006). The Future Imperfect. The Times 11th November 2006. Web. 16 January 2014 < >

Fisher, D. et. al. (2004). Interactive read-alouds: Is there a common set of implementation practices? The Reading Teacher, volume 58, issue 1, 8-17. doi: 10.1598/RT.58.1.1.

Galdn Rodrguez, A. (2011). Aparicin y desarrollo del gnero distpico en la literatura inglesa. Prometeica, no. 4, 22-43. Web. 7 January 2014


Galdn Rodrguez, A. (2013, October). Two spaces in dystopian society: the opposition between the metroloplis and natural space. Paper presented at the 16th Culture and Power Conference, Murcia.

Gottlieb, E. (1992). Dystopian Fiction East and West: Universe of Terror and Trial. Quebec: McGuill-Queens U.P.

Gough, P. (2010). Who am I? Who was I?: The Posthuman and Identity Formation in Scott Westerfelds Uglies Trilogy. London: Roehampton University.

Huxley, A. (2004). Brave New World. London: Vintage.

Huxley, A. (2004). Brave New World Revisited. London: Vintage.

Miskec, J. and McGee, C. (2007). My Scars Tell a Story: Self-Mutilation in Young Adult Literature. Childrens Literature Association Quarterly, volume 32, number 2, pp. 163-178. DOI: 10.1353/chq.2007.0031

Orwell, G. (2000). Nineteen Eighty-Four. London: Penguin.

Orwell, G. (2001). Orwell and Politics. London: Penguin.

Rabkin, E., Greenberg, M.H. and Olander, J.D. (1983). No Place Else. Explorations in Utopian and Dystopian Fiction. Carbondale: Shouthern Illinois U.P.

Remus, T. (2013): Pretties with Ugly Thoughts-Studying Critical Approaches to Modern Beauty Politics in Scott Westerfelds Uglies Trilogy. Berlin: Universitt zu Berlin.

Sherborne, M. (2009). York Notes: Nineteen Eighty-Four. London: York Press.

Snodgrass, M.E. (1995). Encyclopedia of Utopian Literature. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO.

Stableford, B. (2011). Ecology and Dystopia. In G. Claeys (ed.), In G. Claeys (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Utopian Literature (pp. 259-281). Cambridge: Cambridge U.P.

Walker Ross, I. (2010). Shaping and Cutting and Improving and Adding: Acknoledged and Hidden Influencies in Scott Westerfelds Uglies series and Philip Pullmans His Dark Materials. Wellington: Victoria University.

Westerfeld, S. et al. (2009). Mind-Rain. Dallas: Benbella.

Westerfeld, S. (2012). Teens and Dystopias. Scott Westerfeld Blog. Web. 11 January 2014 .

Westerfeld, S. (2012). Uglies. Londron: Simon & Schuster.

Wolf, K. (2013). Dystopian Love: A Look at Romance in Young Adult Dystopian Novels. Muncie-Indiana: Ball State University.

Zamiatin, E. (1952). We. New York: Dutton.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Angloamericanae Journal (AAJ) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License Based on a work at