Questions tagged [society]

For questions dealing with how sentient beings interact with each other in a community.

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44
votes
13answers
9k views

Would the principles of Stack Exchange work in a real-world utopia?

Following on from my previous utopia-based question (Could compulsory experience-sharing make a utopia actually work?), I'm wondering whether a website could ever be a utopia. Firstly, are there any ...
44
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11answers
9k views

Randomised bank accounts

One morning, everyone wakes up and finds that the balance in their bank account has changed. In some cases, it's gone down. In others, it's gone up, a lot. A few people even find that they don't ...
43
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11answers
11k views

How to avoid the language barrier when there is no time to learn the other language?

In my medieval world, population A and population B have not had any contacts for thousands of years. But pressing events will make them look for each other. However when they meet... how are they ...
43
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18answers
5k views

How to fulfill a wish without causing a lot of troubles

A week ago, I was walking through an old district of Prague and found an old lamp. I tried to clean it by rubbing it... And you guessed that correctly: A genie appeared saying: "I will fulfill you one ...
43
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10answers
8k views

Santa exists. How do we react?

TL;DR: Santa delivers physical objects to 95% of people (including adults) who ask for it in the form of a letter. He will start this Christmas and will continue until decided otherwise. And yes, he ...
42
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8answers
5k views

Modern trading card game viable in late medieval / renaissance times?

A tad bit late perhaps, but the creation of Gwent in The Witcher 3 PC RPG game has got me thinking: would a modern trading card game(hereafter referred to as TCG) like Magic: The Gathering be able to ...
42
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10answers
4k views

How would societal development be impacted if humans were not an apex predator?

We are used to a world where humans are basically an apex predator; we don't really need to worry much about becoming some other animal's next meal. If that wasn't the case, and humans had to be wary ...
41
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18answers
5k views

Papers, please: Can characters trapped in our reality acquire enough paperwork to be legal?

Being at Anime Expo last weekend got me thinking about all the "trapped in another world" anime I watched as a kid: Inu Yasha, Fushigi Yuugi, Escaflowne, etc. The general plot of these is that a high ...
41
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6answers
5k views

Will majority of population dismiss a video of fight between two supernatural beings?

This question is inspired by discussion in the comments of the question What kind of supernatural powers don't break the masquerade? TL;DR Suppose you want to create a world where beings with ...
40
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22answers
8k views

How can you prevent a theocracy from being inevitable when religious leaders have power over nature?

In this world, religious leaders of a world religion practice a form of ritual magic that is essential to human existence. Certain rituals must be performed at certain times for nature to function ...
40
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20answers
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Why don't Vulcans just take the pills?

I am well aware that this question is on the border between the Worldbuilding and the Sci-Fi site. I decided to post it here, because I am seeking for a general society/worldbuilding answer and "...
40
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15answers
12k views

Biological CPUs - why would the developed world fear them?

There is a bottleneck towards Strong AI in my universe. For whatever reason, no one has ever figured out an AI that is sufficiently autonomous to be left alone without intervention, and no one has ...
40
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15answers
8k views

Jobs for Giants in modern society

Me Gam. Me Giant. Me not very smart but me need food. Me need to find job. In my world Giants are a thing. And they need to eat too. In fact, they need way more food than most of us. Therefore, ...
40
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10answers
7k views

What social and environmental factors would create a culture where wives had more than one husband

On Earth ancient cultures developed marriage system of polygamy where one husband had multiple wives. What environmental or social differences would you need to create a world with an ancient ...
40
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22answers
4k views

Is it realistic to believe an apocalyptical setting can last 500+ years?

Our world of fiction is filled with books, movies, and games suggesting a Mad-Max-style apocalypse can last hundreds of years. This, despite the fact that nuclear fallout would decay within a decade ...
40
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10answers
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What effects would a change in the nature of human sexuality have on society and infrastructure

Consider a group of humans at a bronze-age to early iron-age technological level colonizing a new earthlike planet. There is just one difference - there exists on the planet something which changes ...
39
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26answers
7k views

What could make a remote village also have reasonably high traffic?

I've got a European medieval-themed world and my focus is everyday life in a small village (population of 300~500 people) in the mountains. I'm trying to stay away from action, adventure, violence, ...
39
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18answers
7k views

The world is ending, how to convince/force chosen ones to come quietly?

The apocalypse has come - nuclear war+asteroid hitting+alien invasion+Skynet+vampires. Doesn't matter which, the world government/s knew this was coming (lets say, a year in advance) and they have a ...
39
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17answers
9k views

What can the government do with its clone army after the war is won?

In order to win the World War one faction begins producing clone super soldiers. The war is eventually won, but now the government must do something with the Clones. They can't kill them because of ...
39
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11answers
5k views

A world without natural time measures

An intelligent race evolves on a planet with no moon or axial tilt, which is tidally locked to its star, and has a very hazy atmosphere. So there are no seasons, no day/night cycle, and the stars are ...
38
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12answers
14k views

What could possibly replace beer?

What is the malted liquor, what makes you drunker quicker what comes in bottles or in cans? BEER! In addition to being delicious, beer is ubiquitous. There is evidence of beer ...
38
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23answers
10k views

What's a possible justification for orcs not taking over the world?

So I'm making a story with the standard Tolkien races. Not terribly original, I know, but it makes for good practice fantasy writing. While I was planning out the history, I realized that orcs ...
38
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21answers
8k views

How can I explain a world where everything is working together to kill the protagonist?

Say an explorer lands on a previously undiscovered land, filled with humans, humanoids, wildlife, elementals, undead, demons... you name it. One would expect that these existing inhabitants would ...
38
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14answers
7k views

Would a sentient species be able to thrive when mating means the death of the male partner?

There is a species that is quite sentient. Its members know about the world, they have hopes and dreams and great aspirations of what they might do with their lives. They are intelligent, creative, ...
38
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16answers
10k views

How powerful would the church become if demons regularly visited Earth?

Setting: the walls between Dimensions have grown thin. This allows malevolent creatures, who for lack of a better term we shall call demons, to enter our world. Details: The demons are on ...
37
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19answers
12k views

Can I reduce the crime rate by penalizing criminals' children socially?

This is a social engineering method. The government takes background checks very seriously. A person's moral standing is not only determined by the actions of the person themselves, but also by his/...
37
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24answers
11k views

How would a society isolated by monster attacks get food?

So I've got a medieval fantasy world where humanity has been forced to live exclusively in fortified towns and city states because of attacks by monsters. These monsters are not kaiju level in size so ...
37
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20answers
7k views

How would people tell time if it was always day?

So, if I have a civilization that lives in a hollow planet, with a sun in the middle. How would they tell time? The sun always shines, and it is a Constant Spring/summertime weather. They have animals ...
37
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13answers
10k views

How many people are necessary to maintain modern civilisation?

Modern Earth; a series of connected events (natural disasters, mass migration, drug-resistant pandemic, collapse in biodiversity, armed conflict) have led to a significant reduction in human ...
37
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4answers
7k views

How to remove snakes from a plain?

There is an African plain, there are trees, grasses, some seasonal rivers/lakes, and snakes. Upon the plain lives a society of tribesmen (think along the lines of the Maasai Mara people) This image ...
36
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24answers
12k views

Explanation as to why Male/Female Wizards have sexy bodies [closed]

I know that RPGs employ eye candy tactics to players of their preferred sex in order to entice the players into the game. Male Wizards are sexy and muscular. Female Wizards are sexy and have big ...
36
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10answers
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How would the indigenous peoples of North America have developed in the absense of the Europeans?

In some alternate history, Europeans never discovered the Americas for one reason or another. Maybe the initial motivations just weren't there, or maybe the visionaries of the day fell ill and died ...
36
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18answers
5k views

How can I use my dominance of the software industry to get my customers to worship an eldritch abomination that they don't believe in?

The world is going to hell. Global warming, overpopulation, economic crises and other such issues plague humanity. The only logical solution is to summon Hastur, The King in Yellow, an elder god from ...
36
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11answers
9k views

What is the earliest point in history that Big Brother could exist?

In the modern world, the technology to monitor your every movement and action is imminently feasible. No one doubts the ability of an omni-government to monitor people; hence GDPR. But Orwell ...
36
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7answers
9k views

Trade Unions VS Guilds: semantics or is there a 'real' difference?

Quick Question: I have looked at both separately but can't find a clear answer that compares them side by side and clarifies what the actual difference is. There seems to be a large overlap between ...
36
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20answers
6k views

10 Commandments to prevent technological development

If an advanced being or group wanted to limit a human society's technological development, they might establish a series of cultural taboos or religious guidelines to influence the societies ...
36
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18answers
8k views

Is it possible for a developed society to practice human sacrifice as a ritual?

Definition from Wikipedia: Human sacrifice is the act of killing one or more human beings, usually as an offering to a deity, as part of a religious ritual. The person to be sacrificed can be ...
36
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11answers
8k views

How does an ordinary person announce major discoveries?

While this is a hypothetical question, I am actually looking for a 'real-world' answer. This is my first time here, so please let me know if I should ask it somewhere else. So, let's say I am an ...
35
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14answers
11k views

How can prostitution be made acceptable in a religiously conservative society?

The dominant faith in this world is religiously conservative and believes that the only legitimate form of sexual intimacy is between husband and wife, and that homosexuality and extra marital affairs ...
35
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18answers
6k views

How can I get mutants to cooperate with a registration program?

Mutants are individuals with various unusual powers. These abilities manifest at different points in life, some at puberty, others well into middle age. Some may be benign, such as breathing ...
35
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18answers
7k views

With some exceptions, what makes the most powerful mage on the planet, not kill a merchant and steal his goods? [closed]

So I am the most powerful mage on the planet. A merchant offers me an artifact that is too expensive for me to buy. With some exceptions, what makes me, the most powerful mage on the planet, not just ...
35
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15answers
12k views

How do I make my dynasty last 1000s of years?

My Kingdom X is a great and prosperous nation, having a decent amount of natural resources. The kingdom's founding dynasty has stood the test of time for 1000s of years, until Kingdom Y launches a war ...
35
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14answers
6k views

How would a society of chaotic evil individuals work?

Imagine an orc-like species of violent sociopaths: they are sadists taking pleasure in the suffering of others, have fits of violent rage, see altruism and empathy as contemptible weakness and are all ...
35
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10answers
7k views

Preventing post-apocalyptic society from becoming misogynistic

The apocalypse has happened, but humanity survives. People still remember the technology they had, but too many of the people who really understood how it worked and how to make it have died, leading ...
34
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11answers
6k views

What measures might an early-medieval society take to deal with draugr?

The Background I have an early medieval/late dark ages society roughly equivalent to Anglo-Saxon Britain or Viking Scandinavia. Everything's fairly normal...apart from the fact that people who drown ...
34
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8answers
18k views

How will our world change if all men suddenly die? [closed]

In a world... with today's technology and level of development there is a Mad Scientist. A woman, to be exact. One day she concludes that men are responsible for all evil in the world and starts to ...
34
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15answers
6k views

How to make a fictional anarchist society believable to non-anarchists?

I'm a free-market anarchist* and, not surprisingly, I enjoy writing sci-fi and fantasy stories about societies without governments. However, I do NOT want to write stories that only myself and those ...
34
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14answers
5k views

What kind of society and morals would an alien species evolved from solitary carnivores have?

I am envisioning a space faring species, evolved from an obligate carnivore and apex predator. The obvious concept to me is a tiger like species with prehensile tails that became increasingly adapted ...
34
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13answers
2k views

Is a world with no technological improvement possible?

A society grows with time, but does the technology needs to grow with them? Is it possible for a planet to have a very large population and much society but no more improvement in the ways of the ...
34
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12answers
4k views

How would society be different in a sentient species that does not care for its young?

A lot of species on earth do not care for their offspring; they spawn thousands of eggs, that hatch into larvae, and then grow up towards full size. If a hypothetical species was sentient in the ...