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Aldous Huxley's Brave New World

Updated on December 18, 2021

Brave New World By Aldous Huxley

Aldous Huxley's Brave New World? I remember when I first heard of this book in high school, it was on my reading list of must read books that first semester of ninth grade. I knew I would HATE IT! I thought it sounded stupid, I couldn't say the author's name and I did not want to have to read and then go over this strange book with a fine tooth comb in literature class. But I did start to read Brave New World and didn't put it down until I was done. I couldn't believe all the thoughts running through my head about the futuristic, utopian world. The drugs, the sex, the science, even at the young age of 14 there was something sad about the control and the numbness described in the book. The lack of anything substantial in the lives of the Utopian citizens was not attractive at 14, and it is even less so today at ... oops, a woman never tells her age!

Do You Think We Live In A Brave New World

Is our world today becoming more like the government run Utopia of Brave New World? Do we give government too much control and rely on our government for everything, including happiness?

Brave New World Summary

Aldous Huxley's Brave New World introduces us to a Utopian world of what would be the year 2495 AD, but now it's 645 A.F. (that's After Ford, named for the same Thomas Ford who introduced the assembly line to the world.) It's a world where everyone and everything in life if controlled by the government, supposedly for the good of the citizen. Society is branched off into five classes from the highest and most intelligent Alphas, who are bred to manage, to each of the other classes who all have a different designation in society. The Betas, the Gammas, the Delta's and at the lowest end of the class scale are the Epsilons. Each class has been conditioned since creation (babies come from test tubes) that it is the best one to be through the use of electric shock and hypnopaedia, or sleep conditioning.

Aldous Huxley - Author Of Brave New World

Source

The world is at peace, life is painless, and time is spent having sex, playing sports and other activities that require little thought. It doesn't sound so bad at first but imagine a lifetime of superficial.

There are some people who reject the Utopian society and they live on the outskirts of the civilized world. They are called Savages, and don't want to live like the Utopians and when one is found and brought to the city, we see how much trouble he has understanding and accepting this society. Savages, to the disgust of the Utopian city dwellers, still marry, bear children and live in a family structure.

Is Science A Good Thing?

Is Science a good thing? That looks like a simple question, doesn't it? Fooled You! It's one of the most difficult questions on this page and I've only given you room for a yes or no answer! Feel free to comment on your yes or no answer below, I'd love to hear what you have to say on this one...even if it's "I Don't Know".

The Theme Of Brave New World

Huxley told us that the theme of Brave New World is about the affects of the advancements in the scientific field on people, and on their individual rights. Aldous believed that every step forward for science was a dangerous step. He believed that when scientific advances were misused they could become evil. He also believed that man's over the top response to the scientific discoveries were allowing science to rule man instead of man ruling science. Today, look what happens when our computers are down ... life as we know it stops. We can't shop because our cards don't work, we can't work because our information is our computers, not too far from what Huxley feared, is it?

Huxley's Fear Of Science And Techological Advances

Huxley was afraid that science and technology were advancing so quickly they were becoming uncontrollable. It's not a fear to be taken lightly. Look at what we have available at the touch of a fingertip today ... we can destroy the world. Science has advanced so quickly yet humans have not. We are still full of emotions, both good and bad, and we cannot always be relied upon to do the right thing. If we don't stop and think about our actions, it could mean big, big trouble. Huxley fears weren't really that far fetched, after all.

Huxley believed, and tried to tell us, that science and technology should serve man, not rule them. Advancements in fields like genetics and eugenics, are a scary part of the scenerio he painted for us, and that's only the tip of the ice burg he was trying to show us.

I Love This Image Of Aldous Huxley

Brave New World Drug

What Is SOMA? What Does It Do?

SOMA is a drug used in Aldous Huxley's Brave New World to numb the feelings of the inhabitents of this Utopian society. In the book we are lead to believe it is harmless, it reduces anxiety and inhibitions. It's like a tranquilizer for the masses and it's taken like candy in Brave New World. Here's a little bit of trivia for you ... Huxley wrote Brave New World in 1932. In the 1950's a couple drugs similar to SOMA were released, ever hear of Miltown or Valium? It's the little yellow pill made famous by Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones in the song, "Mother's Little Helper".

The Rolling Stones - SOMA AND Mother's Little Helper

Soma In Our World - Can't We Fix Almost Everything With A Pill

Labels, pills, liquor, drugs - do these things in our society equal SOMA in Huxley's Brave New World? Is our world just as dependent on substances as the Utopian society of Aldous Huxley's book?

Do Many Societies Today Function With The Help Of Different Forms Of SOMA?

Pavlovian Reaction - Instant Gratification

Do you think people have a must have it now almost Pavlovian reaction to possessions and want it now urges today? Has instant gratification become a conditioned response in today's society?

Are we conditioned by brand names and advertising campaigns with a Pavlov's Dogs type reaction when it comes to possessions? Is instant gratification becoming the norm?

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1958 Interview With Aldous Huxley - Huxley Says Brave New World Utopia Is Around The Corner

Brave New World Characters

Find out about the major and the minor characters in Aldous Huxley's Brave New World -

Original 1980 BBC Television Production Of Brave New World - All Three Plus Hours Of It!

Allusions

An allusion is an indirect reminder of something - Here are some of the allusions in Brave New World

  1. Pavlov's Dogs is a famous scientific study about conditioning and the Brave New World is all about conditioning.
  2. Predestination is man deciding his own fate, but in Brave New World the government is in charge of determining the fate of it's citizens.
  3. The Malthusian Belt was used for birth control in Brave New World and it was named for Thomas Malthus who believed that famine and disease helped to keep the population in control so the world wouldn't become too populated.
  4. Thomas Ford replaced God in Brave New World. He was seen as the Father of Invention and help up to the people as an idol to adore.
  5. Decanting is the artificial creation of an embryo from beginning to the time of the birth...in Brave New World the fetus is actually stimulated to life.

Aldous Huxley Narrates "Brave New World"

“But I don't want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin.”

“If one's different, one's bound to be lonely.”

“I want to know what passion is. I want to feel something strongly.”

“I am I, and I wish I weren't.”

— Aldous Huxley - A Brave New World

“One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them.”

“Chronic remorse, as all the moralists are agreed, is a most undesirable sentiment. If you have behaved badly, repent, make what amends you can and address yourself to the task of behaving better next time. On no account brood over your wrongdoing. Rolling in the muck is not the best way of getting clean.”

“Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted.”

— Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Did you ever read this book? It's a great read, makes you think, has romance and savagery in it, what more could you ask? If you haven't read this novel, get it. You won't regret it, after all, any book that makes you think...like it or not...is well worth reading. This book makes us ask questions about science, God, government, society, drugs, sex, morals and more. It is one of the best books I've ever read and if I were to pick it up and read it again today, I would have new questions and ideas to think about.

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