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Brave New World Introduction

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Angela Garrett

on 9 June 2014

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Transcript of Brave New World Introduction


by Aldous Huxley
I. The Novel
II. The Author
III. The Reason
IV. The History
V. The Vocabulary
VI. The Literature
Written in 1932
Vision of scientific,
technological, Utopian
future with castes
Fact overlaid with fiction
Logical development
(begins with everyday life in World State,
later moves into moral instruction
"Utopia" = "no place" (Greek)
Huxley said: "Human beings are given
free will in order to choose between
insanity on one hand and lunacy on the other.
Sci Fi: Huxley uses real
science to make the
unbelievable seem
believable; examines
the promise and the
misuse of science
Social Commentary: Mankind
is moving swiftly toward
Prophecy: Pavlov's conditioning;
nature vs. nurture in development;
effects of chemical dependency
Satire: Pure pessimism; material
things and "advancements" have
made man bored, pointless
International Affairs:
Hitler, Mussolini, Lenin;
Communism and Facism
place state above
individual; dangers of
blind allegiance
Economic Issues:
Bigger factories = more
"stuff"; mass production;
mistreatment of workers
Urbanization: people migrating
to cities; as "one of the crowd,"
individual responsibility
Psychic Cost: Man can do
something about situation
but won't make the effort;
shift from pursuit of truth &
beauty to comfort & leisure
AF 632: "After Ford"; our year 2532
Bokanovskification: cloning done by
splitting fertilized eggs into genetic
copies; average of 72 "babies"
Conditioning: Like Pavlov, training
an individual to respond to stimulus
in a specific way
Decanting: last step in the artificial
stimulation of the embryos, resulting
in what we call "birth"; emphasizes
gov't control over everything
Ford: As in Henry; he was source of
truth and inspiration for the
World State
Hypnopaedia: "sleep teaching"
Thomas Malthus: English political
economist who believed that Earth's
population should be controlled
Predestination: the deciding of an
individual's fate for him or her
1) London, AF 632 - all-powerful
government with 10 controllers;
people docile and happy; disease
and old age nonexistent

2) Savage Reservation - New Mexico;
poverty, filth, disease, clinging to

Choice between civilized servitude
and primitive squalor
1) Community, Identity, Stability
vs. Individual Freedom

2) Science as means of control

3) Threat of Genetic Engineering

4) Misuse of Psychiatric Conditioning

5) Extreme Pursuit of Happiness
(sex, drugs, recreation)

6) Destruction of Family

7) Denial of Aging and Death

8) Oppression of the Individual
Introduction to World State
Chapters 1 - 3: Nature of the State

Chapter 3: Character Introduction

Chapters 4 - 6.2: Insight into Lives
The Reservation
Chapters 6.3 - 9: Life on the Savage Reservation
John in the World State
Chapters 10 - 15: John's Reaction to World State

Chapters 16 - 17: Discussion of World State

Chapter 18: John's Withdrawal

Ford = Lord
Model T = Cross
Soma = Communion

Psychoanalysis (parental
suppression of desire,
sexual development -
physical and moral)

How John understands the
world; represents rejected
art; emphasizes John as
thorn in World State

Instant gratification &
false happiness
Full transcript