Architecture in Contemporary Literature

The Role of Space in Science Fiction Literature and its Transformation: “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?”

Author(s): Ali Aydın * .

Pp: 213-220 (8)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815165166123010029

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Since architecture has a fundamental place in many aspects of life rather than just the construction of buildings, it necessitates an interdisciplinary view to comprehend its influences and consequences fully. After the design and construction process of the buildings is completed, they lead a different life in everyday life. Therefore, the literature contains essential potential about the adventures of architecture in daily life. It witnesses the neglected life of the discipline of architecture, which is confined to certain areas. On the other hand, science fiction literature expands these boundaries to timeless areas due to its themes based on the imagination of the future. One of the masterpieces of science fiction literature, Philip K. Dick's novel “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” is an important work that should be consulted, as it gives architects a chance to examine today's world from the perspective of the past and the future, both in terms of being far ahead of its time and in terms of space imaginations. The article aims to ask what kind of parallels the spaces in the novel have with the social life of the characters and what the dystopian relationship with technology will transform architecture into. In this context, it seems that spaces have lost their importance in line with the relationship that the characters have established with technology. In the novel, where life is made bearable only by several technological possibilities, we come across the vision of a dystopian planet in which its ties with Earth are irrevocably severed. Architecture, which cannot go beyond the collage of the past on such a planet, appears as a faint shadow in the pleasing world of technology. As a result, the architectural setup plays a vital role in increasing authenticity as well as event and character setups in science fiction literature. It is seen that the one-sided relationship with technology reduces architecture to a simple décor of a history of an emulated past. This ascribed role undoubtedly embodies implications for the present and the future. What kind of problems will be caused by looking at architecture from the perspective of the imposition of a limited present constitutes the most dominant architectural potential of the novel.

Keywords: Architecture in science fiction literature, Architecture in contemporary literature, Baroque, Blade runner, Capitalism, Do androids dream of electric sheep?, Dystopia, Futurism, Kipple, Modernism, Mercerism, Mars colony, Nexus-6, Philip K. dick, Ridley scott, Robot technology, Space, Science fiction, Time, Technophobia.

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