Brave New World Essay, Research Paper
Soma and orgy-porgies, sex hormone chewing gum and erotic play among children-all of these things further the power of the centralized world government in Brave New World. In a civilization that is without disease, old age, and all negative emotions, the people are forced to pay a price without even realizing it. That great price is their freedom. With mass consumption as a diversion, the New World quickly forgets the advantages of true independence. In the futurized novel by Alduos Huxley, conformity rules over individuality and scientific control successfully enslaves a brainwashed and fearful society.
“Bokanovsky’s process is one of the major instruments of social stability.” (BNW 7.) First the scientists fertilize one single human egg, by arresting it’s normal development, it then proceeds to bud, producing many identical eggs. By making thousands of siblings, they are easily able to create a sense of community among all the children. A major problem that is recognized right away is, won’t overpopulation lead to problems with the economy? In response to this question, Huxley states, “Overpopulation leads to economic insecurity and social unrest. Unrest and insecurity lead to more control by central governments and an increase of their power.” (CN 29.) The world leaders gain even more control when they start regulating society’s ability to think on an individual basis. This is done through classical conditioning, and what Utopia calls “hypnopaedia.”
Hypnopaedia is sleep teaching. It is used to “drum prejudices into the subconscious of the sleeper.” (CN 7.) The Director of Hatcheries explains, “Till at last the child’s mind is these suggestions, and the sum of the suggestions is the child’s mind. And not the child’s mind only. The adult’s mind too- all his life long. The mind that judges and desires and decides- made up of these suggestions. But all these suggestions are our suggestions!” (BNW 29.) Another form of control used by the government is chemical persuasion.
Soma, it comes in several forms, mainly tablets. It is described to be “a pacifier that lulls the passions and understandings of the people, a major instrument in social stability.” (CN 8.) In small amounts Soma is euphoric, yet in larger doses it “induces blissful disorientation and then sweet, restorative sleep.” (CN 34.) Because Soma is so pleasurable to Utopian life, and has no side effects, it is one of the main methods of control in Brave New World. ” It kept the people uninterruptedly distracted and contented and prevented insurrection.” (CN 34.) With all of these powerful forms of control, society is growing more oppressed, and the centralized government is gaining strength.
Towards the end of the novel, one of the world controllers, Mustapha Mond, asks, “What’s the point of truth or beauty or knowledge when the anthrax bombs are popping all around you? That was when science first began to be controlled- after the Nine Years’ War. People were ready to have even their appetites controlled then. Anything for a quiet life. We’ve gone on controlling ever since. It hasn’t been very good for truth, of course. But it’s been very good for happiness. One can’t have something for nothing. Happiness has got to be paid for.” (BNW 228.) This powerful quote spoken “straight from the horse’s mouth” shows the attitude of the people in control of Utopia. Yes, society has sacrificed freedom and independence, but for what cost? Mustapha Mond later points out that although the people are without God, poetry, freedom, independence and goodness, they never have to face disease, old-age, anxiety, stress, and “unspeakable pains of every kind.” (BNW 240.) The fact remains, because science controls every aspect of life, and the government controls science, the people of Brave New World are slaves trapped in a very powerful system.