This is a continuation of the Science Fiction / Fantasy Genre Glossary Project posts. For the complete genre index click here.
What is Cyberpunk?
A subgenre of science fiction. Cyberpunk depicts dystopian near-future world's and issues of high-tech are explored via the underbelly of society. Protagonists are plucked from the fringes of society: criminals, hackers, the displaced and poor. There is frequently an undercurrent of rebellion, of trying to preserve individualism in a world of corporate interests. Elements of noir and crime fiction are also featured.
Frequently explored themes:
- Impact of technology on society
- Access to information
- Artificial intelligence
- Corporate control of society
- Fusion of human and machine
Blade Runner, Akira, The Terminator, Ghost in the Shell, The Matrix.
Some articles suggest that cyberpunk is a genre long past it's peak. Was cyberpunk, like the new weird, a literary movement rather than a genre? Is cyberpunk dead?