Brave New World - Aldous Huxley

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         Aldous Leonard Huxley was born on July 26, 1894. In Goldming, Surrey southeast of England. Aldous' father was the son of Thomas Henry Huxley, a great biologist who helped develop the theory of evolution. Undoubtedly, Huxley's heritage and upbringing had an effect on his work. Gerald Heard, a longtime friend, said that Huxley's ancestry "brought down on him a weight of intellectual authority and a momentum of moral obligations." Throughout Brave New World you can see evidence of an ambivalent attitude towards the ruling upper class (A. Mathew). This fact and several other events in his life had crucial effect on Huxley’s writing.

Like England in the 1900s, Huxley's Utopia possesses a rigid class structure, one even stronger than England's because it is biologically and chemically engineered and psychologically conditioned. And the members of Brave New World's ruling class certainly believe they possess the right to make everyone happy by denying them love and freedom. Huxley felt that “heredity made each individual unique, and the uniqueness of the individual was essential to freedom”(Aldous Huxley: The…).

An event that marked Huxley was his mother's death from cancer when he was 14. This, he said later, “gave him a sense of the transience of human happiness.” Perhaps one can also see the influence of his loss in Brave New World. The Utopians go to great lengths to deny the unpleasantness of death, and to find eternal happiness. Very much similar to Huxley’s life citizens of Brave New World have a miserable life, Huxley himself suffered from various illnesses and was married twice.

When Huxley was 16 and a student at the prestigious school Eton, an eye illness made him nearly blind. He recovered enough vision to go on to Oxford University and graduate with honors, but not enough to fight in World War I, or to do the scientific work he had dreamed of. However scientific ideas remained with him, and he used them in many of his books, particularly Brave New World. His experiences in fascist Italy, where Benito Mussolini led an authoritarian government that fought against birth control in order to produce manpower for the next war, also provided materials for Huxley's dystopia, as did his reading of books critical of the Soviet Union.

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This is probably from where he gets he motto “COMMUNITY IDENTITY

STABILITY” (Huxley 46)

Huxley wrote Brave New World in four months in 1931. It appeared three years after the publication of his best seller, the novel Point Counter Point. During those three years, he had produced six books of stories, essays, poems, and plays, but nothing major. His biographer, Sybille Bedford, says,

“It was time to produce some full-length fiction--he still felt like holding back from another straight novel--juggling in fiction form with the scientific possibilities of the future might be a new line” (Aldous Huxley)

        On having ...

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