Brave New World and Today’s World

28 04 2010

I was given an assignment by my English teacher, Mr. Stephens, to make a connection between one of the texts we have read this year and the world. This year, we have read Beowulf, Grendel, Macbeth, Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Dracula. We are currently reading Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.

I chose to talk about the connection between Brave New World and the world. Brave New World is prophetic satire about our world, which turns in to the “World State” where all people are conditioned to think the way that will not go against the World State’s motto, “Community, Identity, Stability.” In the World State, people are born through a high-tech reproductive system. Cloning is common in the World State. They use Bokanovsky’s process to create identical twins to maintain stability in the world. When being made, humans are divided into five different castes: Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and Epsilon. People are all conditioned to be happy with their state, regardless of their social caste. This is done by something called hypnopaedia, or sleep learning, which¬†unconsciously¬†makes some things become embedded in people’s mind. If they really become unhappy, there is always soma present for them to take. Brave New World shows how much the definition of “happiness” can be deteriorated.

Brave New World is supposed to be the ideal world. However, it seems more like a dystopia where only forced happiness exists.

In today’s world, unlike the World State, we have more freedom of thinking and more uniqueness. However, we cannot say that we are completely different from the World State. We are indeed being conditioned also by media, and we are indeed trying to fit in the society. What is our definition of happiness? Being better than other people? That is not the meaning of true happiness, but media is depicting the definition of happiness as “success” or “being the best.” The media is not a reliable guide. Yet, it is still the greatest influence to human beings. We get judged and divided into groups depending on our level of knowledge and our level of success. Are we not divided into castes? I think we are.

The only difference that exists between the two worlds is the love. Emotions exist in this world unlike the World State. We cannot say that Huxley’s prediction is not so realistic, because if we really think about it, we are really a step away from becoming the World State.