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Quote Study Of Brave New World By Aldous Huxley

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“Tall and rather thin but upright, the Director advanced into the room. He had a long chin and big rather prominent teeth, just covered, when he was not talking, by his full, floridly curved lips. Old, young? Thirty? Fifty? Fifty-five? It was hard to say. And anyhow this question didn’t arise in; this year of stability”.

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Huxley relies heavily upon animalistic features when describing his characters. The description of the director is very specific, in great detail. Huxley then goes on to ask the rhetorical questions of how old the director was. The brief, remark of not knowing leaves the readers almost humored. After having such detail in describing the director, the narrator was not able to tell if he was thirty of fifty, a major age difference. Not only does this show the lack of human connection within the world state but it also shows the lack of awareness. Consumed by the power of soma, the world state is an emotionless place that dehumanizes its people by not getting to know them. Huxley’s unique animalistic word choice in many parts of the novel are used to show the animalistic behavior of selfish, careless humans.

“One egg, one embryo, one adult-normality. But a bokanovskified egg will bud, will proliferate, will divide. From eight to ninety-six buds, and every bud will grow into a perfectly formed embryo, and every embryo into a full-sized adult. Making ninety-six human being grow where only one grew before. Progress”.

This quote is coming from the director explaining the process to make a human being in the world state. Huxleys’ scientific wording shows the reader the precision of the World State, the lack of emotion in a process that is very emotional for us. The juxtaposition between our idea of childbirth as a beautiful thing and a scientific process of the World State highlights the lack of emotion and nurturement in the World State. The repetition of the word “one” in the first sentence shows the reader how exact the process of growing new life is in the World State. Huxley also uses repetition of the world “will” to enforce the idea of stability within the world state. Ending with the word progress, Huxley wants the reader to question whether this cold process is really progress.

Novel’s Theme

“Yes, that’s just it.” The young man nodded, “If one’s different, one’s bound to be lonely. They’re beastly to one. Do you know, they shut me out of absolutely everything?”

Conforming to society norms does not progress a society. Bernard and John are two misfits of the novel. They both are often either ousted from the group or would prefer to be by themselves. The quote above shows how they are connecting through this common trait of being different. In the World State being different is looked down upon. Huxley uses John who does not conform to the World’s States ways to criticize our society and how we treat misfits. The quote says that if you are different than you are bound to be lonely. Huxley is saying that it is easier to fit in than to be alone.

“Everybody’s happy now.” “Yes everybody’s happy now,” echoed Lenina. They had heard the words repeated a hundred and fifty times every night for twelve years”.

True happiness cannot be achieved without pain. The people are the World State are conditioned to believe they are happy as seen in the quote it is repeated to them every night. Not only do the people of the World State drown themselves in soma to feel numb but they also never experience any hardship or discomfort. Thus, they can never be truly happy, they never have to overcome any barriers so their state of mind is always neutral, content. The quote also uses the word “echoed” implying that Lenina does not actually believe what she is saying but rather repeating it blindly. Huxley is pointing out the stress of being happy all the time society places on us. That our happiness turns into artificial and that when we are not happy we must be different or doing something wrong. This overall theme subject of not having true happiness without pain is evident throughout the novel when the people of the world state are constantly feeling the same way.

Characterization

“The mockery made him feel like an outsider; feeling like an outsider he behaved like one, which increased the prejudice against him and intensified the contempt and hostility aroused by his physical defects. Which in turn increased his sense of being alien and alone”.

Bernard is a character that the reader starts off pitying but later finds Bernard as an agitating character. Bernard does not participate with many of the activities of the World State for example he does not want to sleep with Lenina and prefers not to take soma. He is often described by feeling distraught and lonely as seen in the quote. Huxley juxtaposes Lenina and Bernard often to show the ideal product of the World State (Lenina). The quote is written in a cause and effect sentence structure of why Bernard feels alienated. His main conflict is with himself. He does not have any confidence in himself and is very jealous of his peers. His actions show his selfish nature, Bernard is incentivized by the gain of his self-image.

Conflict

“Did you eat something that didn’t agree with you?” asked Bernard. The Savage nodded. “I ate civilization.” “What?” “It poisoned me; I was defiled. And then,” he added, in a lower ton, “I ate my own wickedness”.

John’s mother was a part of the World State and was conditioned to love it. When she would talk to John about it, she shared all the good things and glorified her past life. So, when John came to the World State he was very eager to live out these stories she told him. However John was immediately outcasted, called “the savage” because he was different and was stared at. His transition to the New World was difficult. This disillusionment he had with the world state and his expectations basically broke him. He had no place at home or in the so called utopia. John is against soma, and does not feel free in the world state. The quote above shows a conflict he is having with himself after indulging in soma. Huxley shows Johns disgust with himself by adding “lower tone” making it clear he is now proud of his actions. Huxley highlights John’s feelings of alienation when John becomes mad at himself, because for most of his life, John only had himself for comfort. Now, he does not even recognize himself.

Setting

“A squat grey building of only thirty-four stories. Over the main entrance the words, CENTRAL LONDON HATCHERY AND CONDITIONING CENTRE, and, in a shield, the World’s States motto, COMMUNITY, IDENTITY, STABILITY”.

The introduction of the novel sets the mood, cold and bland. The building was “only” thirty four stories high, showing how massive the population is and how quickly it is growing. Huxley sets the story in London, a grey, rainy place. The motto is significant in that the rest of the novel is centered around enforcing those three words. The reason the World State was created was to enforce stability. With not feelings, stability is possible is their platform. Science has become the god in the novel. This is also in line with a motto of the time period of industrialization and how society was focused on innovation and production. Pointing out the technological advances of the time and the constant progression. Again the move from emotions to science.

“The mesa was like a ship becalmed in a strait of lion-colored dust. The channel wound between precious banks, and slanting from one wall to the other across the valley ran a streak of green- the river and its fields”.

This quote describes the savage reserve which is completely in contrast of the World State, it is much more natural and less sterile. The savage reservations are a place people from the state like to go observe but in this scene we see Lenina become very uncomfortable. She is now facing disillusionment with this dirty place. Using similes and personification Huxley paints a picture of the savage reservations in the reader’s mind. The savage reservations are in New Mexico and the people are impoverished and old. Linda and John live in the reservation. Lenina’s discomfort and disgust is pointing out that in our society, uncivilization in looked down upon. Instead of trying to help the poor as a society we turn away.

Figurative Language

“Pierced by every word that was spoken, the tight balloon of Bernard’s happy self-confidence was leaking from a thousand wounds.” Bernard is a very lonely, childish man. When he finally gets some attention for having a relationship with the savage, he is thrilled. Until the savage lets him down. The metaphor that Huxley uses to show Bernards self-confidence diminishing perfectly portrays to the reader how disappointed he was. Huxley also using personification to show how severe of an impact the criticism Bernard was received had on him. The language Huxley uses shows the overall message that one looks to others for approval. Huxley exaggerates how Bernard is feeling to show the read his high hopes for his reputation. Bernard then goes into a disillusioned state after not getting the results that he predicted.

“The savage retreated in terror, flapping his hands at her as if he were trying to scare away some intruding and dangerous animal”.

Again, Huxley uses many comparisons to animals throughout the novel. This scene is between John and Lenina, each from very different upbringings. John is seen to be animalistic throughout the novel, he is called the savage which immediately strips him of his identity. The dehumanization of John leads to his alienation. However, Lenina is very fond of John. The simile describing John warding off Lenina shows the reader how people felt towards John. But John then feels this way toward Lenina. John wanted a true relationship with Lenina, to marry her and love her. However Lenina is so conditioned to her way of life. Huxley used animalistic comparisons to highlight the differences in their two worlds and to point out how society dehumanizes those who are different by putting them into categories.

11 February 2020

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