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Referat Brave New World by Aldous Huxley - Community, Identity, Stability

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Brave New World

by Aldous Huxley

Brave New World is a book about the future, about freedom, about love, about being different, about drugs, about the conflict of the new world and the old, a book about science, about education, about sex, about art, about work, about politics, about remorse and about happiness.

Community, Identity, Stability

That’s the motto of the world state (the whole world is only one state) in the year 632 A.F.1 . In these times the children are no longer born, they are produced. They (for example the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Centre) take an egg, fertilize it artificially and bokanovskify (bokanovskifying is a process to make nearly hundred twins out of one egg, developed by a man called Bokanovsky) it. And, of course, there are no mothers in this world. The children are produced in a tube, in a bottle. The kids are also predestined when they are in a bottle. The Predestinators can decide if the child will be born as an alpha ( for example politicians or scientists) , a beta, a gamma, a delta or an epsilon ( for example mining workers) . The alphas are the most intelligent people in this world and the epsilons are the dumbest.

You may think that, for example, an epsilon is not happy with his work and the fact of being an epsilon. But that’s not true, an epsilon is as happy as an alpha. “People are happy; they get what they want, and they never want what they can’t get. They’re well off ; they’re safe; they’re never ill; they’re not afraid of  death; they’re blissfully ignorant of old age; they’re plagued with no mothers or fathers; they’ve got no wives, or children, or loves to feel strongly about (there’s no love, but there is sex [] everyone belongs to everyone else” ) ; they’re so conditioned that they practically can’t help behaving as they ought to behave. And if anything should go wrong, there’s soma. ” ( p. 173) .

Soma is a drug that pushes you down, that makes you calm. The people take it when they feel bad or they want to rest. “A gramme is better than a damn2.” , “One cubic centimetre cures ten gloomy sentiments2.” What is called a soma- holiday in the book, is when they take soma, lie down in bed and dream of something beautiful. “Take a holiday from reality when ever you like, and come back without so much as a headache or a mythology.” (p. 53)

But it isn’t only soma which keeps them happy, their whole thinking is predestined. The principle of sleep teaching or hypnopaedia is used. The children are told the same sentences regularly, while they sleep, again and again. For example: “Alpha children wear grey. They work harder than we do because they’re so frightfully clever. I’m really awfully glad I’m a Beta, because I don’t work so hard. And then we are much better than the Gammas and Deltas. Gammas are stupid. They all wear green, and Delta children wear khaki. Oh no, I don’t want to play with Delta children. And Epsilons are still worse. They’re too stupid to be able to read or write. Besides, they wear black which is such a beastly colour. I’m so glad I’m a Beta2.” ( p. 33) or “But old clothes are beastly, we always throw away old clothes. Ending is better than mending. Ending is better [] The more stitches, the less riches, the more stitches [] I love new clothes, I love new clothes, I love []2 .”

The people believe these sentences their whole life without doubting about them, they not even think about whether they’re true or false.

In their freetime they can play obstacle golf, watch and feel a feely (a film that you can’t only see, you can feel it) or have a man or a woman.

So you see everyone is happy in this world.

Bernhard Marx, the Savage and Lenina

Bernhard Marx : he works at the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Centre as a           scientist. Mr. Marx is an Alpha- plus, and for an Alpha he is very small. Not        only his body is different, he is different. “‘And then he spends most of his                                        time by himself- alone.’ There was horror in Fanny’s voice.”  There is the                             rumour that [] somebody made a mistake when he was still in the bottle-      thought he was a gamma and put alcohol into his blood- surrogate”.             Bernhard Marx doesn’t like his life, he has other moral opinions than the                                         others, for example he doesn’t want just to have a girl, he wants to love a                             girl. “‘Talking about her as though she were a bit of meat.’ Bernhard   ground his teeth. ‘Have her here, have her there. Like mutton. [] He would      have liked to go up to them and hit them in the face- hard, again and again.           ‘Yes I really do advise you to try her,’ Henry Foster was saying.” (p. 46/47)     And Mr. Marx thinks about the things going on in the world. So he is very          different.

John, the Savage : he lives in a savage reservation, and later he comes  to London. In all two      places he is different from the others. He has civilised parents (real          parents!) and he lives with his mother in the reservation. His mother came          there by accident and couldn’t “flee”. He was born in the reservation.           Because he is not a real Indian, he is not accepted in all points, for example      he doesn’t have the right to do the same religious ceremonies like the other                             boys at his age. And in London it’s clear that he is different, he has like                                Bernhard Marx other moral opinions. His thinking is different.

Lenina Crowne :  she also works at the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Centre. It   isn’t said in the text if she’s an Alpha but I suppose she is an Alpha or a Beta.   Lenina is just like the other women, she is not different.

How the Savage comes to London, and how Bernhard is sent to an island

The whole drama begins when Bernhard flies for a few days with Lenina to the savage reservation. There they see (in our opinion) normal people, born people. They are Indians, they are living in huts [“‘But how can they live like this?’ she (Lenina) broke out in a voice of indignant incredulity. (It wasn’t possible.)”] , and Bernhard and Lenina see religious ceremonies and then they meet John ( “‘You are civilised, aren’t you? You come from the Other Place, outside the Reservation?’”). He leads them to his and his mother’s hut.

John talks with Bernhard about the life in the reservation and his problems here, and Bernhard tells him about London and the civilised world. After all Bernhard decides to take the Savage and his mother to London. “‘O brave new world that has such people in it’.”

As the savage comes to London, he doesn’t like it so much as he had thought. “‘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.’ [] ‘I’m claiming the right to be unhappy.’”(p. 187). But nothing of that he can get in the “Brave new world”.

His mother dies in his arms in the Park Lane Hospital for the Dying. At the same time a group of children is in the hospital to learn that death is nothing to fear of. They run around the beds, they cry and they make fun of the dying.

As John walks out of the hospital, full of hate and anger and sadness, also two Delta “Bokanovsky Groups of 84 red- headed female and 78 dark dolichocephalic male” twins all in all come out of the building to get their daily soma ration. Suddenly the Savage gets mad, takes the soma for the distribution and throws it away and cries : “‘Don’t take that horrible stuff. It’s poison, it’s poison. [] Free, free!’”. When Bernhard and his best friend come to the place of the happening, they find John fighting with the Deltas. Bernhard calls for help, and his friend fights with the Savage against the Deltas.

The police comes and all three are brought to the office of Mustapha Mond, the controller of London. After a long talk Bernhard and his friend are sent to an island, where all those people are sent who think differently. John can go home to his apartment.

The savage loves Lenina, and Lenina loves John, but he thinks he isn’t worth her. So one day when Lenina wants to sleep with John, he gets crazy and decides to flee. He goes to an old wooden house, which is standing alone on the field, to pray, to live in freedom and to train himself in discipline. But soon he is found by reporters, who are interested in his doings and  suddenly everything gets out of control. In the end he hits them with a whip and drives them away. The next day the journalists find the Savage dead. He has committed suicide.

The book and me

 I like it when such a system like in “Brave New World” is described with all details, with all pros and cons.

In the beginning there are only the students and the director. The director shows them the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Centre and so he shows the reader the theoretical system of the world state. Then Bernhard, his friend and Lenina come and show us the people and the system in practice.

In the savage reservation we see the opposite of the world state. The systems are different, but they are also similar, the people and the problems are very similar. John and Bernhard have got the same problems, they’re different.

In the next part the problems of the main characters in their surroundings are described, and now their problems have got results.

And in the last part everything gets to an end. I think the book has a great construction.

There are three scenes which I remember best: - chapter 3 : the further you read, the shorter get the paragraphs, until one paragraph is only one sentence in direct speech, and without the person who said it. (great)

- the dialogue between Mustapha Mond and the savage: “‘ I’m claiming the right to be unhappy.’ (the savage) [] “‘You’re welcome’” (Mustapha Mond). (impressive)

- the very end: “north, north- east, east [] . (ingenious)

Two totally different cultures meet each other. One shows the other what’s wrong, but maybe these things wouldn’t be wrong if the main characters wouldn’t be different. And so the book is a book about being different. And I like that.

“Brave New World” is a great book.

Aldous Huxley

1894- 1963

Aldous Leonard Huxley was born on July 26, 1894 in Great Britain. His grandfather was Thomas Henry Huxley, a great biologist who helped to develop the theory of evolution. His mother was the sister of Mrs. Humphrey Ward, the novelist; the niece of Matthew Arnold, the poet; and the granddaughter of Thomas Arnold, a famous educator and the real- life headmaster of Rugby School who became a character in the novel “Tom Brown’s Schooldays”.

When Mr. Huxley was 16 and a student of the Eton College an eye illness made him nearly blind. But he recovered enough vision to go on to Oxford University. He graduated successfully. Because of his eye illness he couldn’t fight in World War 1 and he couldn’t do the scientific work he had dreamed of. But scientific ideas remained in him, and he used them in many of his books. The idea of vision was so important to him, that he wrote a book about that and later became a screenwriter (for example: Pride and Prejudice [with Laurence Oliver]).

In 1919 he married Maria Nys, a Belgian. In 1920 their son Matthew Huxley was born. In 1937 he went with his family to California, where he became a screenwriter. In the 1950s he became famous for his interest in mind- expanding drugs like LSD and mescaline, which he took a dozen times over ten years. Aldous Huxley wrote also books about his experiences with drugs, for example “Doors of Perception” (1954) and “Heaven and Hell” (1956).

In 1955 his wife Maria Huxley died. A year later he married Laura Archera.

Aldous Leonard Huxley died on November 22, 1963.

He wrote 47 books in his long career as a writer. His most famous works are:

novels: Crome Yellow (1921), Antic Hay (1923), Point Counter Point (1928), Brave New          World (1932), Eyeless in Gaza (1936), After Many a Summer (1939), Ape and Essence (1948), Island (1962)

essays: Jesting Pilate (1926), Ends and Means (1937), Tomorrow and Tomorrow and      Tomorrow (1956), Brave New World Revisited (1658), Literature and Science (1963)

philosophic and social critical works: The Art of Seeing (1932), The Perennial Philosophy                                       (1946), The Devils of Loudon (1952)

about drugs: The Doors of Perception (1954), Heaven and Hell (1956)

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley                                                                                  Michael Salcher 1999

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