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April Week 2

Teen Reader

  Minority Report

“The Minority Report” (1956)

“The Minority Report” Text Version

“The Minority Report” Audio Version

Philip K. Dick


Philip K. Dick (born December 16, 1928, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.—died March 2, 1982, Santa Ana, California) was an American science-fiction writer whose novels and short stories often depict the psychological struggles of characters trapped in illusory environments.

He published his first novel, Solar Lottery, in 1955. Early in Dick’s work the theme emerged that would remain his central preoccupation—that of a reality at variance with what it appeared or was intended to be. In such novels as Time out of Joint (1959), The Man in the High Castle (1962; Hugo Award winner; television series 2015–19), and The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (1965), the protagonists must determine their own orientation in an “alternate world.” Beginning with The Simulacra (1964) and culminating in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968; adapted for film as Blade Runner [1982]), the illusion centers on artificial creatures at large and grappling with what is authentic in a real world of the future.

After years of drug abuse and mental illness, Dick died impoverished and with little literary reputation outside of science-fiction circles. By the 21st century, however, he was widely regarded as a master of imaginative, paranoid fiction in the vein of Franz Kafka and Thomas Pynchon. While his works can definitively be categorized as science fiction, Dick was notable for focusing not on the trappings of futuristic technology, as many writers in the genre do, but on the discomfiting effects that these radically different—and often dystopian—surroundings have on the characters.


“The Minority Report” Discussion Questions

1. How is Anderton described?

2. Why is Precrime created?  What isn’t working?

3. How do the Precogs work?  How did they end up like they are?

4. How is the system kept in check?  Who is in charge of the other set?

5. After Anderton pulls his own card, who does he believe is behind it?

6. Who is Anderton supposedly going to kill?  Does Anderton know him?

7. Where does Fleming come from?  Who does he claim to work for?

8. Explain a Minority Report?  Why is it called this?

9. What does the story say about multiple time-paths? 

10. Can Anderton “change his mind” now that his is informed?  What if the others had been shown their card?

11. What is Kaplan trying to do?  Why doesn’t he want Anderton arrested?  What kind of conundrum is Anderton facing?

12. Why is Kaplan doing all of this?  What is he trying to gain?

13. What does Anderton end up doing?  Do you think he made the right decision?  Why or why not?

14. What happens when there are three separate reports?

15. Does deterrence work in our current society?  What, do you believe, is the best way to end crime in the long term?

16. Is a system like Precrime fair?  Why or why not?  Does Anderton’s story disprove the system?


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