207 of 219 people found the following review helpful
At what price contentment?,
This review is from: Brave New World (Paperback)
Brave New World is an excellent book and, what's more, one that seems to be becoming more relevant all the time in our fast paced world. And unlike many other books with a similar philosophical orientation, Brave New World is quite refreshing, as Huxley's prose is somehow manages to be clear, elegant and insightful without being overly obvious.
As regards the actual plot, Brave New World is in essence a portrayal of a utopia (or dystopia, depending how you look at it) in which there is constant prosperity, people are always content, as they are well provided for and have been programmed to like their society in all respects. This programming is undertaken by workers in charge of breeding the future citizens of this idyllic world, which is united under one government, under Ford. As everybody has been programmed to like their class and job, everybody is constantly content and has no wish to do anything other than what is required of them. If they happen to become depressed, of course, there is always the mood altering drug Soma.
Through presenting a few individuals who do not exactly fit into this molded world, however, Huxley presents us with a challenging and endlessly interesting question: What can possibly be wrong with a world in which everybody is happy, even if there is no real free will involved in actuality? If we can make ourselves superficially content and never have to suffer a moment of desperation or uncertainty, why not just do that? With the help of William Shakespeare and a young man from a "savage reservation," Huxley explores the alternatives to his invented society's promotion of mindless satisfaction. Should true art and the deep thought and emotion that inspires it be sacrificed to perpetual happiness without thought or deeper feeling? Or is the attempt to find these deeper meanings just silly and self-defeating, as we will all meet the same fate in the end?
In this era of quick entertainment, instant gratification and materialism unbounded, there are no better questions to be asking than these, the ones at the heart of Brave New World. Pick up a copy and start to read - in addition to being quite interesting as a science-fiction book or portrayal of a future world, Brave New World is a book that inspires a lot of thinking about our lives today.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 14, 2011 2:22:23 PM PDT
Brian Shaw says:
In reply to an earlier post on Mar 2, 2013 9:18:33 PM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Mar 2, 2013 10:13:20 PM PST]
Posted on Aug 15, 2013 12:30:14 PM PDT
Joe E. says:
Thank you for this review, excellent overview
Posted on May 7, 2015 9:57:52 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 7, 2015 9:58:32 AM PDT
R. Boland says:
I reread this book recently. The first time I'd read it was in Junior High along with '1984.' It struck me, on my reading this as an adult, that this is a powerful answer to those who question God's existence by saying thing like, 'If there was a God, why is there suffering in the world? He either does not exist or He is cruel.' You can see how this book is a powerful answer.
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 4, 2015 7:15:05 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 4, 2015 7:17:06 AM PDT
Brian Shaw, this review was obviously written by a intelligent, THINKING person but you missed that, cause all you care about is perfect grammar.
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