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Cyberpunk, as a genre, includes a wide variety of visual aesthetics but is recognized by it’s encompassing theme of “high tech, low life” that started to gain prominence in the 1980s, thanks to the works of authors like Philip K. Dick, Roger Zelazny, J. G. Ballard, Philip Jose Farmer, and Harlan Ellison as they examined the impact of drug culture, technology, and the sexual revolution while avoiding the utopian tendencies of earlier science fiction.

Themes used in cyberpunk media involve artificial intelligence, class uprising, governmental and corporate corruption, anarchy, gang warfare, and transhumanism. The range is broad but the cyberpunk aesthetic is often used to convey deeper meanings and commentate on modern society and sometimes predictions of our future society.

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In truth, most online aesthetics almost completely owe their entire existence to Cyberpunk and its rebelliousness to the status quo of the 1980’s; everything from the Steampunk and Dieselpunk of yesteryear to any sort of microgenres that will pop up in the future.