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Mar 5, 2008
This week's theme
Lesser-known counterparts of common words

This week's words
prepone
nocebo
dystopia
inhume
prequel

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dystopia

(dis-TO-pee-uh) Pronunciation Sound Clip

noun: An imaginary place where everything is very bad, as from oppression, disease, deprivation, etc.

[From Greek dys- (bad) + utopia (an ideal place). Modeled after Utopia, an imaginary island described in Sir Thomas More's 1516 book Utopia as a place enjoying a perfect system in law, politics, etc. The word utopia is from Greek ou (not) + topos (place).]

"Aldous Huxley's Brave New World is a good model of the technological dystopia we should fear: Instead of social control enforced from the outside, Huxley envisioned a world enervated from within."
Jeffrey Klein; Billing Us Softly; Mother Jones (San Francisco); Jan 11, 1998.

See more usage examples of dystopia in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

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We lie the loudest when we lie to ourselves. -Eric Hoffer, philosopher and author (1902-1983)

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