For Better or For Worse

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Let’s talk about a novel that highlights the dangers of our technological future

As this month’s issue is dedicated to Michigan, why not celebrate a Michigan author to go along with the theme? Alexander Weinstein paints a futuristic picture of what life might look like decades from now in his short story collection, Children of the New World.

Imagine living in our world half a century from now. What do you see? A world dependent on technology? If so, then you seem to be on the same page as Weinstein. He creates a world that is extremely high-tech, with technology like social media implants, virtual reality games, memory manufacturers and severely perceptive robots.

To some of us tech geeks, this may sound like a kind of utopian paradise, but what are the consequences for continuing to expand and grow our technological capabilities to an extreme? Weinstein tries to answer this question by transporting you through 13 dystopian short stories, with cautions for humanity inside of each story.

From satirical to sad, these stories take present-day anxieties and turn them into realities where people must deal with the results of their reliance on technology. In a manner different from many other speculative and depressing works, this book uses wry prose and humor to lessen the immensely relatable doom that some may consider our future.

Instead of things like social media implants or robots, Weinstein believes we could change this possible doom of a future into something beneficial for our entire world. When asked about what technology might be good for our world, Weinstein answered, “I tend to think that the most basic answer to this question is: technology to help create clean drinking water, and clean energy technologies which can supplant oil and coal, etc. So essentially, functional technology whose aim is to solve our most fundamental environmental problems.”

It’s pretty scary to think about which way our world will go. We have the option of a technological takeover or a fully functioning world where perhaps every country has clean water and sustainable resources. Let’s hope for the latter so that we can save our world.

If you intellectually related to this post, try grabbing a copy of Children of the New World, where you can take a look at a depiction of our ill-fated future while also supporting a Michigan author.

 

 

Amanda Kimmen is a senior majoring in professional writing who is on the editing and publishing track. She has a passion for health and fitness, so you can always find her watching fitness vloggers on Youtube or kicking butt in the gym. When she isn’t working out, she is usually snuggled up with a good book and a cup of coffee.

 

Tags: Alexander Weinstein, amanda kimmen, book of the month, book review, Children of the New World