Chapter 1 Summary: The novel is set six hundred years in the future. The world has submitted to domination by World Controllers, whose primary goal is to ensure the stability and happiness of society. Thus the underlying principle of the regime is utilitarianism, or maximizing the overall happiness of the society. The novel begins at the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Center, a production factory for human beings. A group of students is being given a tour of the facilities by the Director. The students are introduced to various machines and techniques used to promote the production and conditioning of embryos.
The scientists take an ovary, remove and fertilize the eggs, force the eggs to bud up to ninety-six times, and subsequently grow the embryos in bottles. Predestinators then decide the future function of each embryo within the society, essentially assigning a future job to each human. The society contains a five-tiered caste system which ranks Alphas and Betas on top. Only the Alphas and Betas come from single eggs which are not budded and hence have no twins. The Centre conditions all the non-Alpha and Beta embryos for their future status in society by dividing them into Gammas, Deltas and Epsilons. Thus the Alphas represent the intellectually superior group, followed by the Betas, and continuing down to the Epsilons.
The Epsilons are described as having little to no intelligence. Analysis: The idea of totalitarian social stability is introduced in this chapter. While few critics have called the governmental regime ‘totalitarian’ in nature, it is explicitly described as such by Huxley. Huxley stated in Brave New World Revisited that the only way to create a permanently stable society is for a totalitarian regime (essentially a dictatorship) to have absolute power. The regime must then ensure that people are happy all the time, be able to control the behavior of each individual, and ensure that independent thinkers are forbidden from disturbing the social fabric. Huxley creates a society in which individual creativity is frowned upon and in which only those who conform are welcome.
... it will be difficult to impose constitutional liberalism to a society. Genuine democratization and liberalization is a process which is long ... freedom. Countries such as China which have continued with repressive regimes offer their citizens more economic liberty and autonomy in their ... : W. W. Norton & Co. Zakaria, F. 2007. The Future of Freedom: Illiberal Democracy at Home and Abroad. New York:
The social motto ‘Community, Identity, Stability’ frames this social structure. Thus Huxley generates ‘community’ by dividing the population into segments, where the Alphas serve as intellectual superiors and Epsilons function as pure menial labor. Huxley shows how ‘identity’ is established in the Conditioning Centre through the selection of the embryos into each of five groups. ‘Stability’ is insured through the limitations placed on the intelligence of each group. The fundamental tenet behind the society is utilitarianism, which describes a society that seeks to create the maximum happiness. Limiting the intelligence of each person to fit the job which that person will be given is one way this society makes them happy.
Thus, Alphas are given challenging jobs and Epsilons are given grunt work which would be boring for higher caste members. Each person’s happiness is maximized as a result of their social conditioning and stunted development. The goal of utilitarianism is to make the society as a whole ‘happier’ and thus more efficient. The society described by Huxley could therefore be viewed as a ‘utilitarian totalitarianism.’ Chapter 2 Summary: The students continue their tour of the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Centre. They watch what is called ‘Neo-Pavlovian Conditioning’ being employed to train a group of infants. In the specific scene in the book, the behavior of Deltas is modified through the use electric shocks and sirens whenever the babies touch roses or books.
This is done to discourage behavior that might destabilize society, such as allowing Deltas to read books and acquire knowledge. The students also view a group of sleeping infants who are exposed to, or learning while sleeping. Hypnopaedia is used to teach moral values. Phrases are read to the babies while they sleep and are repeated several thousand times. In this chapter, infant Betas listen to a tape played hundreds of times which indoctrinates them to believe they are superior to Gammas, Deltas and Epsilons, but not as clever as Alphas.
... of social stability various methods of social control are used. After birth each person goes through a process of "conditioning" that ... the two authors have chosen different approaches to create an alternate society, both books have similarities which represent the visions ... wrote his book before the Scientific Revolution, before industrialization, Huxley's comes after. In the 16 th century, England ...
Analysis: Huxley reveals some of the main sources of social stability. Through the use of science, people are not only created, but also conditioned to guarantee they will be happy members of society. The comment by the Director, ‘What man has joined, nature is powerless to put asunder,’ reveals the extent that the conditioning can alter behavior. Pavlovian conditioning is based on research by Pavlov.
He showed that animals can be trained to do an action through punishment and reward. This concept is expanded to humans by Huxley, who uses it to condition the babies of the lower classes. In his example, Deltas are trained to avoid roses and books by giving them electric shocks when they touch those items. Psychologically, this conditioning also lowers these classes to the status of animals.
The use of strengthens the conditioning and indicates the subversive nature of the state. Huxley is showing the readers that propaganda starts at birth and can be used even when we are unaware of it, as in the case of sleeping. He reinforces the point that people are unaware of how influential the propaganda is by constantly having his characters quote ‘ phrases.’ The goal of the state is to ensure social stability, and the conditioning can be understood as creating the ‘community’ by segregating each infant into separate classes. This promotes stability by creating a group of workers whose preferences are molded by the state. Thus economic stability is simultaneously guaranteed by creating preferences which promote spending. This is touched on more in Chapter 3.
Chapter 3 Summary: The student tour is led outside where they watch some children playing a game of Centrifugal Bumble-puppy. The game is elaborate and requires complex machinery. They are told that the heavy reliance on machinery is done to increase consumption of material goods and thus boost the economy. Young children are also encouraged to play erotic, sexual games. A boy who refuses to play with a young girl is taken to a psychologist. The Director begins to talk about the past where children were raised by parents rather than the state.
... emancipation from every earthly influence. The latter aspect of ecclesiastical history is chiefly exhibited in the vicissitudes of the Papacy as ... temporal power -- in the growth and settlement of the Roman States. The conservation of the independence of the Holy See through ... mankind, that, through all the shocks and changes of our history, through barbarous and civilized ages, in spite of the ...
He is interrupted by Mustapha Mond, the Controller of Western Europe. Mustapha proceeds to tell the students that the ‘home’ consisted of a mother, father and children. The home is described as diseased and smelly, and containing overbearing intimacies and emotions. Freud is given credit for showing that the ‘appalling dangers of family life’ lead to individual instability.
The Controller indicates that this in turn leads to social instability. The Utopian society has therefore coined the phrase ‘everyone belongs to everyone else’ in an effort to eradicate individualism. The Controller also gives a history lesson, and describes how the first reformers were banned by the old governments. After some time had elapsed, a period called the Nine Years’ War was fought. This war destroyed most of the old world and brought the World Controllers to power. They struggled to defeat embedded culture by initiating a campaign against the past, destroying monuments and books, and banning sexual reproduction.
Religion, and in particular Christianity, was reduced to a form of worship of Ford. To emphasize Ford’s great contribution, mass production, all the crosses were cut to make a T in honor of the Model T car. Additionally, a new drug called soma was invented which acted like cocaine or heroine but had no ill side effects. The drug ensured that people would spend their time hallucinating rather than thinking. Soma is still used by the society and is distributed by the government each week. Lenina Crowne is introduced again from Chapter 1.
She now discusses her four month long relationship with Henry Foster with her friend Fanny Crowne. Fanny is upset that Lenina is having such a long relationship with only one man. She quotes the phrase ‘everyone belongs to everyone’ and tells Lenina to start having sex with other men. Lenina agrees with Fanny and tells her that she likes Bernard Marx and has decided to join him on a trip to the Savage Reservations. Fanny is skeptical and says that she thinks Marx is a loner and an introvert.
... seem to portray characteristics of Utopian societies, in reality both societies leave people without free will and individuality leading ... to an anti-utopian society. George Orwell creates a society, Oceania ... and Oceania. Tele screens prevent people from behaving in a way other than society accepts. With these strict principles ...
Bernard Marx is a specialist on. The reader first meets him while he eavesdrops on a conversation between Henry Foster and another worker. Foster and the other man are discussing Lenina and Foster tells the man he should ‘have’ her, implying sexual relations. Marx gets upset when he hears this, and it can be inferred that he is love with Lenina.
Analysis: Chapter 3 introduces many of the main philosophical issues within the novel. Huxley presents the social necessities for perfect stability within his society. These include the role of consumption, the interplay between sexuality and emotions, the role of history, and the redefinition of religion. Consumption is viewed as beneficial to society. The society believes that more consumption means that the more goods will have to be made. This will increase the number of jobs and keep the society fully employed.
Examples of how consumption is increased include: phrases which tell people to throw away old clothes and buy new, indoctrinating Deltas to enjoy country sports so they will use the state transportation system to exit the city, and complex machinery being required for any sort of sport or game. The interplay between sexuality and emotions is complex. Huxley realized that monogamy, sex, and family ties generate most human emotions. Thus, the Utopian society is based on promiscuity and baby factories. The goal is to eradicate emotions by replacing them with pure sexual desire and nothing else.
This, combined with the baby factories, destroys family life and monogamous relationships. Emotions are therefore directed mostly by the state, which is necessary for social control and stability. It is interesting to note that the exact opposite technique was used by George Orwell in 1984. Orwell banned sexual relationships in order to eliminate dangerous emotions that might go against the state. However, since both authors realized that sexual emotions destabilize society, each technique a chivies the identical goal: elimination of sexual emotions. History and religion are viewed as dangerous and potentially corrupting.
Having a history gives people a sense of time outside of their own time frame. This in turn makes people think about progression through time, which is something the society cannot permit without causing social upheaval. Thus Huxley uses the quote from Ford, ‘History is bunk,’ to indicate that history is worthless and should not be studied. The Controller describes history in a way that further emphasizes its negative aspects. He also blames Christianity for the inability of past societies to achieve (in this context Huxley means growing babies outside of the human body).
... their daily lives. As individuals, people condemn it; as members of the larger, anonymous society, people love it. Again, back to ... ly, television producers will try to arouse powerful emotions in people to get attention to increase popularity, and ultimately make ... money. Certain things arouse emotions more reliably than others. ...
The new ‘religion’ in the society is based on consumption.
There is not really religion to speak of, but rather a system of ideologies which acknowledges Ford as its leader. Thus the society replaces the Christian ‘Our Lord’ with ‘Ford’ and uses the T instead of the cross. Consumption is viewed as extremely positive due to the introduction of mass production. Huxley plays with the fact that Henry Ford introduced mass production with the Model T car. Huxley then bases the Utopian ‘religion’ around that fact.
However, strong elements of Christianity remain. Chapter 3 ends with a scene taken from the New Testament where Jesus tells his disciples to let the children stay with him. In the book His Fordship Mustapha Mond is harassed by two noisy children. The Director of the Centre orders them to leave. Mustapha, however, replies as Jesus did, saying, ‘Suffer little children.’ Chapter 4 Summary: Part One: At the end of work, Lenina and Bernard Marx share a crowded elevator heading to the roof.
In front of everyone, Lenina tells Bernard that she will go on a date with him. Marx is embarrassed by the public display and would prefer to talk it over in private with her. She laughs at his awkwardness and then joins Henry Foster for a round of Obstacle Golf, one of the games played by adults. Bernard watches her leave and is approached by Benito Hoover. Hoover tell him not to look so glum and offers him soma, a narcotic, to make him feel better.
Part Two: Bernard gets in his private vehicle and flies over to visit Helmholtz Watson. Both men are described as individual thinkers who have become friends because they cannot fit well into the society. Bernard is different because he is physically smaller than the average Alpha, whereas Watson is more intelligent then other men. Watson is the antithesis of Bernard; he is handsome and sporty and has women fawning over him.
However, he prefers intellectual conversations and likes to talk to Bernard Marx. They go to Bernard’s apartment and Helmholtz talks about wanting to be able to create something out of words. He indicates that he is good at making slogans, but that he feels his words are not important. While he is talking, Bernard becomes afraid that someone is listening to them at the door. He goes to check, but finds no one there.
... Society” by John A. Hostetler, John is talking about the Amish society. The Amish societies are a group of highly Christian religious people ... evolve with time. In the Amish society young people do what old people did when they were young. According ... of The Johns Hopkins University Press. Hostetler, John (1993). Amish Society (fourth ed.). Baltimore, Maryland; London: Johns Hopkins University ...
Having betrayed his nervousness, Bernard breaks down and tells Helmholtz that he is suspicious of everyone anymore, and it is really becoming difficult to put up with people. Analysis: Chapter 4 marks a departure from the first three chapters by introducing rational humans. The fact that society abhors rational, independent thought is seen by the mockery of Bernard Marx by his coworkers. Helmholtz Watson also faces the same predicament in the sense that his superiors think he is a little too good at what he does.
This fear of individuality is something Huxley requires in order to ensure the stability of the society. If individualism were permitted, then creativity would exist. Since creativity would leads to attempts to reform the society, the World Controllers attempted to root out individuals where ever possible. A conflict emerges between the rational thinkers and the majority of the people who merely follow orders. By identifying in Bernard Marx many of the normal feelings and emotions people have today, the reader is led to support him as an underdog. However, Bernard Marx is insecure and emotional, and therefore has difficulty understanding the society he is a part of.
Helmholtz can be understood as embodying pure reason, or an intelligence devoid of emotional complications. Thus Helmholtz serves to provide a philosophical understanding of the society. He is able to rationally understand Bernard’s emotional conflicts without getting himself involved. Chapter 5 Summary: Part One: Lenina and Henry Foster finish their game and return to Henry’s apartment building.
On the way home they see a cremation factory. This leads them to discuss the fact that all caste members, from Alpha to Epsilon, are physic o-chemically equal. Lenina comments that all members of society are happy, regardless of their caste. Foster indicates that this is because of their conditioning. At Foster’s apartment building they eat and then go to the Westminster Abbey Cabaret. After taking the narcotic soma, they dance to synthetic music until the show ends.
They then return to Foster’s apartment and prepare to sleep together. Part Two: Bernard attends a Solidarity meeting, essentially a community meeting where Ford is worshipped for his ideas and the people are expected to merge themselves into a unified group. He almost shows up late and is immediately embarrassed when a woman asks him which sport he played that afternoon. Bernard normally does not play any games and is forced to admit this fact.
There are twelve people in his group, alternating sexes around a circular table. The service is similar to the Eucharist in Christianity, except that soma is drunk and consumed. The goal is to spiritually unify the twelve people present into one person. The people sing until they feel the presence of Ford and then dance around to the hymn Orgy-porgy. Bernard becomes fixated on a woman named Morgana, whose eyebrows form one unified brow. This distracts him so much that he is unable to sense the same ecstasy that the other people feel and must pretend to be as caught up in the ceremony as the others.
The service ends and Bernard emerges feeling more self-conscious than ever before. Analysis: Foster and Lenina represent the majority of the people in the society. Their actions are proscribed by society and they do not do anything extraordinary. Their conversation consists of repeating phrases learned during, and therefore contains no new intellectual ideas. When they go dancing at the Cabaret they are joining 400 other people. This signifies the fact that they are followers and that they adhere to state doctrine.
The religious service attended by Bernard is interesting because of the use of Christian icons and concepts. The circle is made of twelve people, which parallels the twelve disciples of Jesus. The drinking and consuming of soma is comparable to the Eucharist, or the Holy Communion where the blood and body of Christ is consumed by Christians. However, the similarity ends at this point, and the sexual dancing which follows is more reminiscent of ancient tribal dances. Bernard’s inability to spiritually join the group further emphasizes his distinctness. The goal of the group is to merge into one.
This is easy for the other members of society who already lack any individuality. But for Bernard spiritual merger is impossible. Huxley indicates that Bernard has achieved a sense of self-awareness not shared by other people, a heightened self-consciousness. Chapter 6 Summary: Part One: Lenina dates Bernard twice before their trip to the Savage Reservations. Each time she finds Bernard to be extremely odd relative to her previous dating experiences. Bernard prefers to walk with her in a park so they can spend time talking.
Lenina cannot comprehend the idea of intellectual conversation, and convinces him to instead go to a wrestling match. Bernard refuses to take any soma, and is unhappy to be in the middle of a large crowd. That same night Lenina expects Bernard to stay over and sleep with her. Bernard has to take a lot of soma before he can do so. On the second date Bernard confides that he wished they had waited to have sex. He comments to Lenina that while people are adults intellectually, they are children as far as their emotions are concerned.
He is tired of being a cell in the body of society, and would prefer to be an individual. Lenina responds to his heresy by quoting her learning. Bernard continues trying to force her to contemplate the structure of society, but to no avail. Lenina’s final comment is that she likes him but wishes he were not so odd. Part Two: Bernard visits the Director and receives his signature, allowing Bernard to take Lenina to the Savage Reservations. The Director relates a story of how, 25 years prior, he had taken a blonde Beta-Minus to the reservation.
They got caught in a storm and she disappeared. The Director realizes at the end of the story that he had revealed emotions he has never forgotten. This makes him upset, and he yells at Bernard for failing to conform to societal standards. The Director finally threatens to send Bernard to Iceland if he does not watch out. Bernard returns home and brags to Helmholtz about his encounter with the Director by embellishing the details. Helmholtz is unimpressed, and hates the way Bernard goes from self-pity to arrogant boasting.
Part Three: Bernard and Lenina cross the Atlantic and go to a hotel near the reservation. Bernard warns her that the reservation lacks any sort of games or amusements, and that she might be bored. She insists on coming with him. They both go to the warden of the reservation and get his signature to let them enter. Bernard remembers at the minute that he left a perfume tap running in his home and that it will be quite expensive. He calls Helmholtz to get it turned off and is informed that the Director has decided to transfer him to Iceland as soon as a replacement is found.
Bernard and Lenina then proceed into the reservation and are left with a young savage as their guide. Analysis: A large part of this chapter deals with the suppression of emotions. The differences between Bernard and Lenina should be construed as a conflict between individualism and conformity. Bernard is experiencing emotions, while Lenina suppresses all emotions before they can surface. She uses the soma to completely avoid situations which would normally incur anger or boredom. This conflict is interesting because Bernard constantly gets mad at Lenina in spite of his love for her.
He appears to treat her very badly, almost condescendingly. Bernard’s behavior only makes sense if the reader understands that Bernard is in love with Lenina. However, his love is based on who he perceives her to be, not on who she really is. Bernard therefore is trying to force Lenina to conform to his perception of her. In addition, Bernard is desperate to have his love for her returned. In a society devoid of commitment and monogamy, the only way for Bernard to get her to fall in love with him is to force her to experience her emotions.
Thus his anger and behavior is structured around forcing Lenina to overcome her conditioning and become emotional. Each characters’ use of soma revolves around inhibiting their emotions. Thus Bernard only takes soma when he is forced into sleeping with Lenina on the first date. It is his way of suppressing his emotional revulsion against having sex so soon.
Lenina uses soma much more frequently than Bernard, but for the exact same reason: she wishes to suppress her emotions. Soma therefore acts not only as a narcotic to control the masses, but also as a means for individuals to avoid emotional conflict. The Director’s story expresses emotions of fear and love on the part of the Director. Since this is expressly forbidden in the society, the Director realizes that he should not have told Bernard about his experience. Thus, the Director’s anger towards Bernard arises from his fear that Bernard could use that information against him.
It soon becomes obvious that the Director is arranging to transfer Bernard to Iceland out of fear that Bernard might tell someone else the story. Chapter 7 Summary: The Indian guide leads Bernard and Lenina into the Pueblo. They are immediately assaulted by the smells and the sight of two women nursing. Since there is no live birth in their society, Lenina finds the scene disgusting.
She then discovers that she forgot her soma, as did Bernard his, and so she is forced to see the village consciously rather than through the veil of the narcotic. Bernard and Lenina are made to watch a ritual dance of sacrifice to the gods Pookong and Jesus. A pile of snakes is made in the center of the Pueblo square and a young man slowly proceeds around the pile. While walking, the young man is whipped, and he eventually falls and dies. After the ritual they both meet a blond haired man with blue eyes. The Savage (called John by his mother) explains to them that he was born to a woman like Lenina who had been saved by some hunters.
Bernard concludes that John Savage’s mother must have been the same woman the Director took to the reservation over twenty-five years earlier. They then meet with Linda, John’s mother, and she is overcome with joy at seeing civilized people again. She complains that there is too much dirt, and that she was forced to drink mescal (alcohol) in place of soma. Lenina is disgusted by her, but feels forced to listen. Linda explains that she used to let all the men come to her, as civilized people should, but that all the other women got mad. Linda also describes how hard she struggled to condition John but seemed to fail.
She concludes that John spent too much time with the Indians to truly become civilized. She describes the Indian way of life as madness. Analysis: This scene marks a challenge to both Bernard and Lenina to release their emotions. Since both of them forget to take any soma along, they cannot hide behind the pleasures of the narcotic. For Lenina this marks the first time that she cannot suppress her emotions completely.
Thus she breaks down and starts crying when she sees the blood of the young man who is sacrificed. Huxley wants his characters to view the Indian ritual without the veil of soma so that the madness of the ritual is not obscured. Linda’s description of the Indian village as ‘madness’ is actually quite accurate. The tribe worships a hybrid god, Pookong and Jesus. Following this already mad combination is the ritual dance, in which a man sacrifices his life by being whipped to death. The dance is unemotionally carried forth with the exception of Lenina’s crying.
Her crying is used by Huxley to point out the obvious, namely that it is possible to eradicate emotions and sentiment even without soma. Thus Huxley is making the point that although the cultures are entirely different, both of them require the suppression of emotion. John Savage is introduced for the first time. He is a hybrid of the two cultures, a man who has been partially conditioned by his mother but raised as an Indian.
He does not belong to either culture, and as such can evaluate the relative merits of both. He is an entirely sane individual caught in an insane environment with a mother who is mostly crazy. It is interesting to note that although he is sane, his mother describes him as being mad. Chapter 8 Summary: Bernard asks John to tell him what it was like growing up in the Indian village.
John tells them about how his mother Linda used to have sex with many men. Pope became her steady lover because he brought her mescal (alcohol).
At one point Linda was beaten by the women of the village because they were upset that she kept sleeping with their husbands. Following the beating, Linda slapped John because she blamed him for her predicament. John was taught to read by Linda as he was growing up. Reading became his way of feeling superior to the other boys who used to beat and taunt him.
Around his twelfth birthday John received a volume of the Complete Works of Shakespeare. He learned to read the entire volume and was inspired by the fiery passages. At one point he attempted to kill Pope and claims to have been inspired by a verse from Shakespeare. At fifteen John was taught how to make clay pots by one of the older Indians. Later he was taught how to construct bows and arrows by the same man. However, John was not allowed to enter the kiva, a ritual initiation to make the young boys into men.
Instead he was driven from the village by a barrage of stones. This incident highlighted his status as an outsider and led him to feel isolated and alone. John and Bernard share the fact that they are both isolated within their respective cultures. John tells Bernard that he stuck off once to have the sacred animal dreams that the Indian boys must have, even though the tribe had not let him go with the other boys.
It becomes apparent that John experiences everything quite emotionally, diametrically opposed to what each society considers ‘normal’ behavior. Bernard cleverly invites John to return to England with him, having realized that John could be useful in ensuring that he is not sent to Iceland. Bernard’s plan is to use John as a means of blackmailing the Director. John is thrilled to be able to go to England and exclaims, ‘Oh brave new world’ when he hears that Linda will be allowed to come along as well. Analysis: John, not accepted by the Indian world, is prepared to leave so that the Utopian world can accept him. The reader can see how John is different from the Indian society in his emotional responses.
Not only his emotions separate John from the Indians, though. He also embodies certain aspects of the English society as a result of his mother’s influence. John Savage represents a parallel to Bernard in that he has struggled to join society, but been rejected by it. Huxley creates a choice of insanities, the insanity of the Utopia from which Bernard comes or the lunacy of the Indian village. This will remain a central conflict for John, who cannot fit into either society since he is a hybrid of both.
However, by taking Bernard’s invitation to go to Utopia, John is giving the other world a chance to accept him. The reader is given John’s history to elucidate the life of the Indians and to show how John differs from them. His individuality is affirmed by his ability to relate a history of his life which is substantially different from any other man’s. John can be seen as a passionate human being who uses Shakespeare as his emotional guide.
It should be obvious at this point that John will be unable to fit into the Utopian society any better than the Indian life. The very fact that he is an emotional being is enough to forever alienate him from the society. Chapter 9 Summary: Lenina is so overcome by the strange events that she consumes a large amount of soma and falls asleep for nearly 18 hours. Bernard waits until she is asleep and then sneaks off to call His Fordship Mustapha Mond in London to arrange to bring John and Linda back to London.
He is given permission and returns to the Reservation to pick them up. John goes to the house where Bernard and Lenina are staying on the Reservation. Since it is silent he becomes afraid that they have already left. But he peeks in the window and realizes they are still home. John then breaks a window and enters the house. He looks around, plays with Lenina’s perfume powder, and finally finds Lenina lying asleep on her bed.
He breathes in her scent and is overcome by her beauty. When he hears Bernard’s helicopter returning, he leaps out of the window just in time to meet Bernard returning from getting permission from Mustapha. Analysis: The reader is introduced to several aspects of John’s personality. John has convinced himself that he is in love with Lenina, and this chapter expresses his love by the way he looks at her and inhales her perfume. John retains extreme modesty, for when he imagines undressing Lenina he immediately feels ashamed for having impure thoughts. John’s modesty towards Lenina represents a central conflict between the Indian society and the Utopian world.
His version of love is strictly that of Shakespeare, and thus his only reference is Romeo and Juliet. John therefore relates his all of emotions to Shakespeare by identifying Lenina in the role of Juliet. This shows how John relies on Shakespeare for his emotional education since Linda was unable to provide him with emotional lessons. Chapter 10 Summary: Bernard and Lenina return to London with John Savage and his mother. Immediately the Director and Henry Foster go to meet Bernard in the Fertilizing Room.
With all the workers present, the Director publicly reproaches Bernard for his social misconduct and tells him that he is being transferred to Iceland. Bernard laughs and introduces Linda. Linda quickly recognizes the Director and calls him by his name, and then rushes up to give him a hug. When he pulls away out of disgust, Linda gets mad and screams at him for having left her on the Reservation, pregnant with John. The Director becomes even more embarrassed when John walks in, falls to his knees, and calls him father. All the workers begin laughing at the scene until the Director finally runs out of the room.
Analysis: Bernard’s successful plot to undermine the Director makes John into a celebrity. Linda, however, is already middle-aged and getting fat. Most of the people in the society are repulsed by her, which makes Linda mad at the society for treating her as if she were different. She therefore pulls out of society and passes her time in a soma induced sleep. Her son John, lacking the societal conditioning, seems naive and almost childlike in his approach to everything. Hence his strong walk when entering the Fertilizing Room, his respect by falling to his knees, and his clear voice when he says, ‘My father!’ This chapter ends with pure irony.
Back in chapters 1 and 2 the Director is extremely arrogant towards the group of students. He starts to tell them about by constantly referring to the words mother and father, both of which have negative connotations in the society. His arrogance while embarrassing the students is repaid here when John the Savage enters and calls him a father. Chapter 11 Summary: The Director is forced to resign his position and Linda is given soma which she takes in excess. John gets worried about her, but is told that she is happier with soma even though she will not live much longer if she keeps taking so much. This is the first time that John encounters the Utopian society’s attitude towards death.
Bernard immediately becomes famous because he controls the Savage’s social schedule. Bernard takes advantage of his fame to get as many women as he can. He also holds parties for the social elites to visit him and meet the Savage. However, he foolishly also starts criticizing society and even goes so far as to lecture Mustapha Mond on ways that society could be improved.
Helmholtz disapproves of the way Bernard is handling things and tells him so. After a brief encounter Bernard gets mad at him and vows never to talk to him again. This pettiness on Bernard’s part is directly related to his sense of insecurity. Mustapha Mond receives written reports from Bernard about John Savage. In one of the reports Bernard lectures him about some problems in the society which John had pointed out. Rather than get upset, Mustapha merely finds it comical and chooses to ignore it.
John Savage is given a tour of the local radio tower and of an elementary school while Bernard acts arrogant the entire time. In the school John watches a video of Indians worshiping while all the schoolchildren laugh at them. He starts to feel a little out of place in the society. Lenina succeeds in getting John to go on a date with her. She takes him to a feel ie show about a black man who falls in love with only one woman. He abducts her, and after three weeks she is finally rescued by three strong Alpha Plus males.
She then becomes the lover to all three of them, and the black man is sent for reconditioning. John finds the movie absolutely horrible and is offended by the morals taught in it. He takes Lenina back to her place, but then leaves her. She gets upset because she had hoped to sleep with him and only recovers by taking her soma. John returns home and starts reading Othello because he recalls that there is a black man in the play. Analysis: This chapter focuses on the behavior of both Bernard and John.
When Bernard becomes important he starts to like the society more. Huxley is showing a baser side of Bernard than the reader has previously been introduced to. As long as Bernard felt inferior and out of place he hated the society he lived in. While unpopular, Bernard did not accept the societal norms and as such acted in an individual capacity. That is mostly why he was able to identify with John’s plight back in the village, and it is also what John liked about Bernard. Sadly, as soon as he becomes popular, Bernard immediately rejects his previous hatred and starts to like what society has to offer.
Thus, he tells Helmholtz that he had six different women in one week. Bernard emerges as a shallow and selfish character who is self-absorbed. What he fails to realize is that selfishness is merely an different form of individuality, and has no place in a society where individual lives are subordinate to the social stability. Throughout the chapter John starts to read Shakespeare whenever he feels upset or confused.
Shakespeare and Linda had always been John’s only sources of information about the other world. Since Linda is permanently under the influence of soma, John can only turn to Shakespeare to explain what is going on around him. The irony is that Shakespeare was a genius at invoking passion and emotion, whereas the Utopian society has virtually destroyed these feelings. This creates a basis of serious misunderstandings between John and the society at large, since John is struggling to develop his emotions while everyone else struggles to suppress their feelings. Chapter 12 Summary: Bernard holds a party with many of the most eminent people in attendance. He goes to get John Savage and introduce him, but John will not leave his room.
The guests become furious and start to immediately talk about Bernard in derogatory tones. Bernard is of course humiliated. The Arch-Community-Songster of Canterbury leaves, taking Lenina with him. Meanwhile, John sits in his room and continues reading Romeo and Juliet while the party falls apart, unaware that Lenina was even at the party. Mustapha Mond is introduced again. He reads scientific reports and evaluates them for publication.
He decides whether or not to publish based on the social impact of each report. Mustapha also expresses regret that brilliant science cannot always be published because it might harm society. Bernard immediately takes lots of soma to escape the humiliation of the disastrous party. When he recovers, the Savage is much more sympathetic to him. John explains that Bernard is acting more the way he did when they first met. Bernard also returns to Helmholtz who is willing to take him back as a friend.
The sympathy and friendship of the two men only serves to make Bernard want to seek revenge on them for having caused his fame to disappear. Helmholtz has gotten into trouble while Bernard entertained. He wrote a poem about being alone and foolishly decided to read it to his students during a lecture. They complained to higher authorities and Helmholtz was told that if anything else happened he would be removed from his position. When Helmholtz meets John Savage they immediately becomes good friends. Bernard naturally feels displaced when in the presence of the two, and continually does things to annoy them.
For example, after Helmholtz reads the Savage his poetry, John pulls out his volume of Shakespeare and reads some of the passages. Helmholtz is overcome by the beauty of the writing, but Bernard tries to make stupid jokes in order to disrupt the reading. Everything goes well until John reads Romeo and Juliet. Since John is still in love with Lenina, he is currently identifying with Romeo and so he puts a great deal of passion into the story.
However, the ideas of forbidden love are so alien to the Utopian society that Helmholtz finally bursts out laughing. At that point John gets mad and locks away his book. Analysis: Both Bernard and Helmholtz get warnings about their behavior in this chapter. Bernard clearly feels inferior to other men and when he returns to Helmholtz to become friends again he gets mad that Helmholtz is generous enough to still want to be friends.
The friendship between Helmholtz and the Savage also serves to make Bernard feel displaced. His constant interruption of their conversations is yet another aspect of Bernard’s inferiority complex. Like a little child he will do anything in order to be noticed. This pettiness is most of what Bernard has left to offer.
Whereas before he was able to refuse soma, he now uses it when feeling depressed. He is thus showing signs of being unable to completely extricate himself from the ideals of the society. Unlike Bernard, Helmholtz is quickly making the transition from a robotic, emotionless Utopian to a thinking, emotional individual. The first example is his poem about being alone. Shakespeare serves as a further catalyst by stirring up his emotions even more. The introduction of Mustapha Mond clues the reader in to a key part of his personality.
Mustapha is completely dedicated to the societal goal of maximizing happiness. Thus, any report or science which might be detrimental to this goal is immediately condemned. However, this crucial scene also indicates that Mustapha is sad about censoring many of the reports. He proclaims, ‘What fun it would be if one didn’t have to think about happiness!’ Lenina starts to act in ways that belie her previous behavior.
Her inability to get John Savage to spend the night with her has the effect of making her think about him all the time. This leads her to a state of depression which she feels unable to cure with soma. This in turn seems to be catalyzing emotions which Lenina is not used to having. Thus, when the Songster leads her away from the party she is not happy about going.
And even more telling, when he wants to sleep with her she requests more soma than usual. Chapter 13 Summary: Lenina’s crush on John Savage becomes more uncontrollable for her. At one point Henry Foster tells Lenina that she appears sick and asks what is the matter. While he is talking, Lenina begins to get annoyed at him, and she finally tells him to shut up. Later, Lenina discusses her sole desire for John Savage with Fanny. Fanny, her ever practical friend, tells Lenina she must either forget about John and sleep with other men, or take the initiative and go directly to John’s room.
Lenina realizes that Fanny is correct. She therefore takes some soma to bolster her courage and goes to visit John. After she arrives she tells him that she likes him. John, with images from Shakespeare in his head, tells her that he feels unworthy of her, and begs her to somehow make him become him worthy. Lenina is soon very confused because John constantly quotes Shakespeare and talks about his feelings. It is only after John tells Lenina that he loves her that she thinks she understands him.
Lenina’s response to being told that John loves her is to strip off her clothes and try to kiss him. Her reaction is perfectly natural given her cultural upbringing. John, however, reacts first with shock and then with rage. He screams, ‘Whore, impudent strumpet’ at her and flings her away. While John tries to slap her, Lenina runs into the bathroom and shuts the door. She then has to beg him to return her clothes and belongings.
Luckily, the phone rings and when John answers it pertains to Linda being sick. John rushes out of the room, leaving Lenina, terrified, in his room. Analysis: Lenina’s desire to be with John is essentially a sign that she is falling in love with him. Her emotional monogamy is new and goes against what she has been conditioned to believe. The fact that Lenina is experiencing entirely new emotions throughout this experience makes her actions and thoughts more like those of an individual.
Thus she constantly requires soma in order to interact with John, taking it during their first date and again before going to his house. Since Lenina has no conception of other cultures and traditions, let alone the Indian traditions, her conception of being in love is for a couple to have sex. Thus, when John tells her he loves her, she logically assumes that he must want to have sex with her. The entire scene of Lenina going to John is a first and final assertion of individuality on the part of Lenina.
After her stripping naked causes John to erupt in violence, she immediately reverts back to the sociological ideals which are her security. Thus Lenina quotes her learning to John while she is in the bathroom. His reaction and their subsequent struggle has the sad effect of destroying Lenina’s move towards individuality. John’s actions are enigmatic at first but logical in light of the story he tells in chapter 8.
John tells how he used to become furious at his mother because she would have sex with so many men. Since his ideals are those of the Indian tribe, namely monogamy, John has a great deal of pent up anger towards his mother. Thus when Lenina strips for him she suddenly becomes everything he hates about Linda. At that moment, Lenina also strips away the power she held over him, namely the power of being desirable. In the baseness of nudity Lenina becomes an object which embodies his mother’s base attributes. Thus John takes all of his rage out on Lenina and drives her away from him.
A more philosophical interpretation of this scene is to view Lenina’s nakedness as the unveiling of the Utopian society. The society is described in terms of beauty, happiness and perfection. However, when stripped of its garments the society appears just as base and human as the Indian society which John left. Thus, Lenina’s nakedness becomes a catalyst in making John realize the gross imperfections of the Utopian society. He realizes at that moment that he cannot survive in this society any better than he could survive in the Indian village.
A subtle irony is that in the Indian village John struggled to belong to the social structure, whereas in Utopia he now struggles to avoid it. Chapter 14 Summary: John Savage goes to the Park Lane Hospital for the Dying to see his mother Linda. He first encounters the head nurse, who is astonished that anyone would want to see the dying or dead. Since society has abandoned individuality, dying is considered to be beneficial to the society. John finds Linda in an unconscious state and tries to rouse her. Meanwhile, the head nurse then leads an entire Bokanovsky group (a large group of identical twins) into the room for their death conditioning.
The boys act as if they are in a game room, and the head nurse encourages them to have fun. The idea is that if death and fun are always intermingled then people will lose their natural fear of dying. When the boys notice Linda they make fun of her ugliness and fatness. John angrily picks one of the boys up and tosses him away from her.
The head nurse is upset that John interfered in the death conditioning and warns him to behave. When Linda returns to a state of semi-consciousness she asks for Pope. Up until that point John had been remembering the positive memories with her at Mal pais (the Indian village).
Her mention of Pope, though, convert his memories to bad ones. Out of frustration he starts to shake her in an effort to get her to recognize him.
Linda suddenly becomes cognizant of John’s presence, but before she can speak she begins choking and fails to breathe anymore. John realizes that he shook her too hard, and he runs to get the head nurse. When she arrives they see that Linda has already passed away in her bed. The head nurse, more concerned about the death conditioning of the young boys, returns to them with an offer of chocolate eclairs.
John sits by the bed and cries over Linda’s death until he is again interrupted by the boys, at which point he silently strides from the room. Analysis: The two concepts of individual death presented in these chapters are starkly different. John’s conception of death holds that each individual represents a whole unto itself. Therefore each individual should be mourned when they pass away. The Bokanovskied children are being taught to view death in precisely the opposite way. They are learning to view death in a societal context, where the individual has no meaning.
Thus death is merely something that happens, and since it does not harm society, it is not something which the people need to fear. The transition between the good and bad memories that John has is a sharp foreshadower of the upcoming events. John initially remembers the good times he had with Linda. But when she mentions Pope’s name, he is only able to recall the bad memories, such as the time he tried to kill Pope.
This parallels John’s vision of the Utopian world, which had been unsullied before he actually arrived in London. However, now that he is actually there, all that is left for him in Utopia are the negative events. With the passing of Linda, John must come to terms with the fact that he is now alone in the Utopian society. All of the ‘benefits’ which the society was meant to confer have turned out to be things which John is morally repulsed by.
In his quest to maintain his own individuality, John will soon realize that he cannot live as a sane member of the society. Chapter 15 Summary: Stepping out of the elevator on the ground floor of the hospital, John confronts one hundred and sixty-two Deltas divided into two Bokanovsky groups. They comprise the menial staff of the hospital and are waiting to receive their soma for the day. The Savage watches them line up to receive their daily ration and starts repeating the phrase ‘Oh brave new world’ to himself. He suddenly decides that the phrase is a call to arms, a challenge to make the world a new place. John Savage pushes his way to the front of the group and starts preaching to the Deltas.
He tells them that the soma is poison and that he has come to bring them freedom. The Deltas are by definition mentally stunted, and they begin to get upset at not receiving their soma. Soon they start to press closer to John, who manages to seize the soma box filled with the rations. Bernard and Helmholtz get a call from the hospital telling them the Savage is there.
They rush over to find John dumping the soma out the window with one hand while punching the Deltas who are attacking him with the other. Helmholtz laughs at this and immediately joins in, yelling, ‘Men at last!’ Bernard hesitates about joining in the fray, becomes scared and waits instead. Soon the police arrive and spray the air with soma, thus subduing the mob. Bernard tries to sneak out, but is caught. John, Bernard, and Helmholtz are put in a police car together and taken to Mustapha Mond.
Analysis: John’s struggle to maintain his individuality is compromised by the Utopian society. Thus his struggle becomes one of destroying the ‘sameness’ of the society. For John, ‘sameness’ becomes visually embodied in the Bokanovskied twins. The physical appearance of multitudes of twins, all replicated and all doing the same job, represents the total eradication of individuality. John logically blames soma for this elimination of individuality. Soma is most often used to suppress emotions, which are the defining characteristics of individuals.
By trying to force the Deltas to act as individuals, John attacks the roots of the society. He sees the difference between the social order and individuality as one of freedom. In the process he is acting individually as well. Helmholtz realizes this and it is why he joins the Savage with the cry, ‘Men at last!’ The irony at this point is that although John and Helmholtz seek to force the Deltas to act as individuals, the result is diametrically opposite.
The Deltas instead begin to act as a unified mob, a classic example of people who have lost all ability to make personal choices. Huxley is pointing out that not only does a mob rob its members of their individuality, but that the Utopian society is in reality a carefully orchestrated mob. Bernard represents a pathetic individual for whom the reader can only feel sympathy. Bernard is so fearful of fully acting as an individual that he is still seeking to be accepted into the society. Thus Bernard is unwilling to join his friends because he is afraid that he will be permanently rejected from society, not realizing that he already has been. This is represented by Huxley in the scene where Bernard tries to sneak out of the hospital with the multitude, but is prevented from leaving by the police.
He is then ushered into the car with the Savage and Helmholtz, firmly implicating him as an individual. Chapter 16 Summary: The three men are ushered into the Controller’s office, that of Mustapha Mond. Helmholtz chooses the best chair in the room while Bernard seeks out the worst, hoping that this self-inflicted punishment will make things go easier on him. Mustapha arrives and asks the Savage if he likes their civilization. John answers no, but adds that there are some nice things like the floating music. Mustapha quotes Shakespeare to him, ‘Sometimes a thousand t wangling instruments will hum about my ears and sometimes voices.’ The Savage is thrilled that someone else knows Shakespeare.
Mustapha indicates that since he makes the rules, he alone may also break them. When asked why old things like Shakespeare are forbidden, Mustapha replies that they are no longer needed. He claims that people are happy now and that they would not even understand the old things. When Helmholtz argues that something like Othello is what he has always wanted to write, Mustapha says that he will never write it. The reason is that the tragedy and the raw emotions lead to social instability. The challenge in the Utopian society is to write works of art about nothing, so that they inspire nothing.
Mustapha then admits that happiness is never quite as great as tragedy, ‘Happiness is never grand.’ The discussion focuses on the necessity of the Bokanovsky groups. Mustapha points out that an entire society of Alpha Pluses would create social chaos. No one is willing to waste time doing the menial chores which are normally done by the Epsilons and Deltas. He mentions a Cyprus experiment where a society of Alphas was created.
It soon disintegrated into a civil war and in the end the World Controllers were asked to take over. They also discuss the role of science. Mustapha argues that science cannot be allowed to progress without strict controls, since science can lead to social instability. When the others protest that science is everything, Mustapha agrees with them. He distinguishes between the science that ensures the social stability and the science which would create social unrest. The Utopian world is built upon the science which helps ensure social stability.
Mustapha then tells Helmholtz and Bernard that they will be sent to an island. The islands are places where social misfits are sent. Usually they are people who have acquired individualistic traits and therefore would start to destabilize society. Bernard protests and prostrates himself on the floor, at which point Mustapha has him removed from the room. Surprisingly, Mustapha admits he himself would have been sent to an island but was given the choice of becoming the next Controller. He explains that his job is to promote the maximum happiness in society.
He is duty bound to promote the happiness of others, but not his own. Ironically, he must act as an individual in order to decide what is best for the society. Helmholtz chooses to go to the Falkland Islands in order to write. His reasoning for the choice is that bad weather promotes better writing.
He then leaves to go make sure Bernard is safe. Analysis: This chapter essentially provides a logical defense of the totalitarian utilitarianism. It brings up a large number of comparisons between the ideals of individuality and those of the Utopian social order. The first debate is about the old versus the new.
Mustapha argues that the old is unnecessary. His reasoning is that old things contain passion and emotions, both of which are destabilizing. Stability is the highest virtue because it leads to happiness. Thus the old things like Shakespeare must be banned since they do not lead to happiness.
Instead there is the requirement that all the new fee lies and shows be about nothing. Only by experiencing pure sensation rather than emotion can happiness be maximized. The next debate is over the necessity of the Bokanovsky groups. They are a necessary part of the society because only by using a caste system can every person in the society be happy. Since each group has its intelligence modified and conditioned so as to make the people happy with the jobs they must do, every person becomes happy in his or her role. As Mustapha points out, a society of pure Alphas leads to chaos because everyone fights for the best jobs.
This chapter defines two primary sacrifices of the old world in order to obtain happiness. They are art and science. Both are sacrificed in order to obtain the ultimate utilitarian goal, that of the maximum happiness. Art is sacrificed by only creating art without meaning. And whereas science is praised for allowing society to become Utopian, it is also restricted because it can just as easily destabilize the society. The differences between Helmholtz and Bernard are drawn even more starkly in this chapter.
Helmholtz chooses the best chair, Bernard the worst. For Helmholtz this represents the superiority of the individual. He no longer feels himself subordinate to society or any individual. Bernard on the other hand is still very much attached to the Utopian society. He chooses the poor chair in the hope that by showing contrition he will receive a milder punishment. Chapter 17 Summary: The last sacrifice made by the old world order to ensure happiness is religion.
Mustapha understands religion as something men turn to late in life when they become afraid of death. Religion is also defined as a substitute for the losses of youth. Mustapha explains that since society eradicated the fear of death and since everyone is artificially kept youthful until they die, there is no need of religion. He also points out that instinct is what people are conditioned to, and therefore people only believe in god if people are conditioned to believe in god.
The Savage argues instead that solitude would lead people to visualize a god. Since the Utopian society has removed solitude, there is no time for people to sit and contemplate the world. This is John’s strongest complaint about the society, namely that it fails to allow people time alone. Mustapha then counters several of the Savages points.
The Savage argues that men are being punished by being happy because they are overindulging in their pleasant vices. Mustapha argues that by their society’s standards each man is happy and perfect as he is. The argument continues: self-denial is condemned as being bad for the economy and opposed to happiness, chastity is described as leading to passion, which in turn creates instability. Nobility and heroics are understood by Mustapha as only existing where instability reigns, and thus they are unnecessary.
The climax of the argument comes when Mustapha says, ‘in fact, you ” re claiming the right to be unhappy.’ The Savage demands the right to poetry, real danger, freedom, goodness and sin by making the powerful statement, ‘I claim them all.’ Mustapha merely shrugs and says, ‘You ” re welcome.’ Analysis: The novel climaxes at the end of this chapter with the words, ‘In fact, you ” re claiming the right to be unhappy.’ In the extremism of the Utopian utilitarianism, the right to be unhappy been abolished. This is what the Savage realizes when he starts claiming all the ills of mankind. He is arguing that being unhappy is a natural right which every man should have. Mustapha clearly disagrees with him. The whole premise of this form of utilitarianism is that people should be happy. Therefore it is necessary to ban anything which would interfere with happiness.
However, in dividing the happy from the unhappy, the individual happens to cease to exist. This is what the Savage cannot accept in the Utopian society. He demands to be an individual, and that entails being unhappy sometimes. Huxley creates several criteria that must be met for the stability of the society to remain constant.
The three major ones are the banishment of art, science and religion. All of these lead to either emotional, physical, or spiritual unrest and would threaten society. Thus they must be either eliminated or used only when they promote more stability and consequently more happiness (as in the case of science).
Chapter 18 Summary: Helmholtz and Bernard go to visit John, who is throwing up in his room. When they ask him what is wrong, he replies, ‘I ate civilization…
It poisoned me.’ John then tells the two men that he had visited Mustapha Mond that morning and asked if he could join them on the island. Mustapha refused his request, indicating that he wanted to continue the experiment. (The experiment can be understood as an attempt to reconcile John to the Utopian civilization. ) Seeking solitude, John runs away from the society and finds an abandoned lighthouse which he makes his home. He spends the first night on his knees in contrition and repentance to his gods so that he will be worthy to enter the lighthouse and inhabit it.
John quickly starts to make a bow and arrows in order to shoot game for food. He also sets up a small garden to provide food for the next year. While making the bow John starts singing, but then he recalls his vows to remember Linda and make amends to her soul. Out of anger at his forgetfulness, John starts to beat himself with a knotted cord. Three Delta-Minus land workers passing by happen to see John beating himself. They are amazed by this incredible display and return to the town where they tell everyone about it.
Three days later reporters begin to arrive, trying to get an interview. John literally kicks the first man to approach him so hard the man cannot sit down well afterwards. The other reporters get the same treatment and quickly start to leave him alone. A few hover in helicopters, but when he shoots an arrow through the floor of the nearest one they too back off. A few days later, while digging in his garden, John starts to think about Lenina. He immediately tries to get her out of his mind by masochistic ly running into some thorn bushes, but he still remembers the smell of her perfume.
He then grabs for his whip and begins to lash himself on the back ferociously. Unluckily, a reporter named Darwin Bonaparte is hiding in the woods and records the entire scene. The movie is made into a feel ie and within a day of its release several hundred helicopters arrive at the lighthouse to with spectators. A huge crowd forms and they all start shouting for him to use the whip. While they are chanting the phrase, ‘We – want – the whip,’ a helicopter arrives with Henry Foster and Lenina. Lenina steps out of the helicopter and starts to talk to John, but he cannot hear her over the roar of the crowd.
His confusion suddenly turns to rage and he rushes at her with the whip, beating her over and over again. He is desperate to kill the flesh. In this state of hysteria the crowd suddenly starts to chant Orgy-porgy. They start dancing and singing, until eventually John gets caught up in the hysteria. Several hours later John is lying on the heather in a soma induced sleep.
The reader is told that the evening was a sensual frenzy. When he wakes up and remembers what took place, he cries, ‘Oh, my God, my God!’ That night the spectators that arrive cannot find him. They enter the lighthouse and see a pair of feet dangling from the archway. John has committed suicide. Analysis: This chapter is partially anticlimactic following the previous chapter where John cries, ‘I claim them all,’ thus demanding the right to anything which would make him unhappy.
Thus this chapter deals more with the interplay of solitude and society, sensuality and religion. John goes off on his own to recapture everything which the Utopian society has gotten rid of: namely religion, love, remembrance, pain, and abstinence. The deluge of people who come to watch John beat himself with the whip marks the last chance John has to join the Utopian world. Lenina’s arrival spurs him into a rage because in his mind she epitomizes everything evil about her world. She represents a sensual being who manages to come between John and his mother, she defiles his abstinence, and she makes him forget his religion. Thus when John sees Lenina he furiously is inspired to attack her.
The ending is different than the reader would expect. The crowd makes a sadomasochistic transformation from demanding to see pain to demanding sexual gratification. Thus the cry of ‘Orgy-porgy’ is taken up and the people start to dance with each other. The cry is likened by Huxley to the beat of the Indian music. Thus it can be inferred that at some point John is overcome by the crowd and joins in. Joining the crowd marks John’s sacrifice of his last remnants of individualism.
He goes from being one man standing alone against a mob of Utopians to becoming a member of that crowd. This sacrifice turns out to be too much for John, and so he is found the next evening hanging from the archway. Why Mustapha decides to keep John as part of an ongoing experiment is obscure. After all, he is willing to send other misfits within the society like Helmholtz and Bernard to an island. There is therefore no logical reason to make John stay. A possibility is that Mustapha views John as a kindred spirit via the Shakespeare that they have both read.
His reason for keeping John is that he wants to convert John into rejecting Shakespeare and into accepting the Utopian dogma. Howe.