Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Brave New World

Kristina Schiano                                                                                               
Brave New World

In Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, every aspect of the World State was controlled and monitored at all times. The Director, Mustafa Mond, and others firmly believed that a person’s humanity could tear down a society. They acted on the ideals that ignorance leads to happiness and tragedy causes instability. To prevent humanity from taking over, they simply eliminated it.
People no longer had real choices because whatever they did had to be for the greatest good. The concept of family and relationships were nonexistent because natural birth did not occur. True love, whether it is between lovers or a parent with their child, was not what the government wanted. Love was intentionally eliminated. Individuality was also taken away because thousands of people looked the same. A person’s entire life was even predestined when put into a caste, where the children are conditioned to allow and prevent certain behaviors. Soma was created to basically numb the mind and body. While on soma, a person’s thoughts could not be clear, which was good for the World State because clear thought could lead to a rebellion. Their minds would fall under a hallucination that shows they are living a happy life in a wonderful place, which of course is a complete lie.
What would be so bad about humanity? The problem is the lack of control it leaves. The mysteries of people’s emotions are seen as threats. Falling in love with someone strikes up desire, passion, jealousy, and anger. Sex would not be an emotionless act like the state wanted it to be. It would be the complete opposite. This would lead to couples wanting to start a family and build a true life together, while planning for the future. They may have hopes for a different lifestyle, job, or opportunities that would not fit in the World State. This is exactly what is trying be avoided. Hope is the enemy in this case. The state wants all of its citizens to believe that the life that is offered is the best in the world. This is why soma is extremely necessary. It eliminates clear thought, getting rid of any signs of hope or wonder of a better life.
The use of technology played a key role in how the society was run as well. People were being monitored from the moment they were created. Full control was essential to the government and the technological advances in science were the answer. Conditioning methods were used to shape children’s minds in a way that could benefit the state. Tests provoked fear for independent thought, travelling, and basically any individualistic ideals. The children were then rewarded with positive reinforcement when the test made things about the state seem utopian. Propaganda was basically being spread nonstop throughout the state, which eventually becomes like hypnosis. Adding soma into the mix creates an even more powerful weapon that the state uses.

            The World State had clear goals, which it would do anything to achieve. Starting from the removal of woman’s ovaries, to the Bokanovsky Process, to conditioning, all of these affected the citizens from the moment they were born. Then being put into castes that determine what your career would be, consuming regular amounts of soma, and basically being able to show no humanistic qualities, all led to the World State for the most part to be victorious. Humanity was seen as the enemy, but what is the point of living if you cannot really feel or do anything? I do not see a point at all.

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