Brave New World is an influential novel written by Aldous Huxley. It is a dystopian novel and indeed a satirical fictional piece of literature by Huxley. The reason for the book to be widely acknowledged today is the fact that one can relate it much closely to today’s society since it holds drastic similarities to the present. Despite any similarities to the present world, Huxley has managed to vision a world of scientific advancements and technological improvements. The book was originally published in 1932.
About the author :
Aldous Huxley is an English novelist, writer, and philosopher. He was graduated in English literature from Balliol College, Oxford. He is best known for his non-fiction books and a wide-range of essays. Some of his notable novels include Brave New World and The Doors of Perception.
Book Summary :
The novel portrays a Utopian world, visualizing the progress of industrialization and technology of the then period. It tries to provide an overview of possible future reality under the situation of technological advancement.
The author talks about various issues happening in London in a newly advanced Utopian nation. He describes the society, friendship, people’s behaviours, the World State, and genetic engineering advancements. The novel happens in London, in the Gregorian calendar year of AD 2540. Lenina Crowne, a hatchery worker and Bernard Marx, a psychologist are the main characters. We come to know about the society from these two characters and their encounters with the society.
Huxley describes two societies in the novel – the Savages, who are reserved ones and the Fordians, the technologically sophisticated ones. the Fordians lack stability and growth, despite being technologically advanced. They are conformed to their societal ideals, without any way for personal progress or growth. They are promiscuous and emotionally unstable. The society is not a healthy as the Fordians possess extreme totalitarianism, by destroying the social system and its members for universal happiness. The sheer materialism of current society can be related to the totalitarianism.
The society holds a caste system in which the Alpha caste are considered inferior. This is quite similar to the current world’s caste and class system. The reproductive process mentioned in the novel is much similar to the today’s cloning techniques and genetic developments. The society creates Deltas and Epsilons with specific characteristics through these methods. The author describes the use of a drug called ‘soma’ which help the Utopian world people for pleasure and to escape reality.
However, the fictional society does not resemble entirely with the modern society. There are several aspects that seem more or less common. This includes the materialism, usage of drugs, scientific advancements and tyranny of happiness. the author makes a vital point that the current society is on its way of changing the characteristics of the fictional society. In near future, it could be possible for our world to imitate the one portrayed by Huxley, but still, there are chances if not counterbalanced. Otherwise, human emotions and happiness could cease to exist for the sake of instant gratification.
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