Orwell, 1984 & Huxley, Brave New World

bartieboy

Ad Honorem
Dec 2010
6,616
The Netherlands
I hated "Brave New World". It seemed absolutely ludicrous to me. "1984" was prescient though. Whenever I think of the government of North Korea, I think of 1984.
Compare brave new world to contemporary western society and you will find they have many things in common.
 

bartieboy

Ad Honorem
Dec 2010
6,616
The Netherlands
Explain please. Not trying to be argumentative, but I don't see a valid comparison.
I am talking about the dumbing down of society.
Orwell presents a society that is controlled by fear.
Huxley presents a society that is controlled by pleasure.
This pleasure is achieved by entertainment. People watch dumb minded shows designed for basic pleasure and outside that a great deal of pleasure is achieved by soma which completely numbs the mind.
Look at a standard families evening, take a step back and compare it to Huxley's society. People hang back in their comfortable couch, watch a movie that's about absolutely nothing and requires no intelligence of the viewer while all the while drinking a glass of alcoholic beverage to numb the mind.
 
Sep 2012
743
Las Cruces, NM
I am talking about the dumbing down of society.
Orwell presents a society that is controlled by fear.
Huxley presents a society that is controlled by pleasure.
This pleasure is achieved by entertainment. People watch dumb minded shows designed for basic pleasure and outside that a great deal of pleasure is achieved by soma which completely numbs the mind.
Look at a standard families evening, take a step back and compare it to Huxley's society. People hang back in their comfortable couch, watch a movie that's about absolutely nothing and requires no intelligence of the viewer while all the while drinking a glass of alcoholic beverage to numb the mind.
Interesting viewpoint. I was looking at the book more literally, but in a general way you do have a point on those issues. Still, 1984 is a much better book :D
 

bartieboy

Ad Honorem
Dec 2010
6,616
The Netherlands
Interesting viewpoint. I was looking at the book more literally, but in a general way you do have a point on those issues. Still, 1984 is a much better book :D
Agreed, I also found it more gripping but then again maybe that's because we have learned through various sources to find action and tension so much more interesting.

Either way Orwell's writing skills are fantastic.
 
Sep 2012
743
Las Cruces, NM
Agreed, I also found it more gripping but then again maybe that's because we have learned through various sources to find action and tension so much more interesting.

Either way Orwell's writing skills are fantastic.
Agree on Orwell. It's a shame he wasn't better appreciated in his own time.
 

Port

Ad Honorem
Feb 2013
2,090
portland maine
In the mid1950's a great atomic war broke out in which "some hundreds of bombs were dropped on industrial centres, chiefly in European Russia, Western Europe and North America." This war led to civil wars and revolutions, with great ideological battles and purges occurring in the late 1950s and the 1960s. By the next decade, Big Brother and his Party had become the dictators of Oceania, an empire spanning the British Isles and the Western hemisphere, and one of three such empires controlling the whole world. This is the starting point of Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.

George Orwell's final novel is clearly his most mature. Certainly, by comparison with Animal Farm, the political philosophy is more developed and point-by-point analogy no longer helps with deciphering the story. Nineteen Eighty-Four narrates a small-scale rebellion against a perfect tyranny in that then future year, 1984. Its three chapters, like its scenery, remains stark with only numerical titles. As a tale, its development is simple and may be broken down as so:
  • In §1, Winston Smith's defiance of the regime begins;
  • In §2, Winston has an illicit affair with Julia. Both decide to join the Brotherhood, an underground revolutionary organization, and shortly thereafter are captured by the Thought Police;
  • In §3, O'Brien, the Inner Party member, proceeds to force them into orthodoxy.

Brave New World is, in many ways, the polar opposite to Nineteen Eighty-Four. It might be described as a polar future alternative. It’s set in London in a world where permanent stability has been attained not through atavistic nuclear holocaust, but through scientific progress – specifically biology. It is remarkable for its reasonably accurate predictions about science and technology, economics and politics, and arts and leisure. It concerns itself with genetics, endocrinology, behaviourism, and pharmacology (IVF and cloning via Bokanovsky’s Process, Malthusian belts, hypnopaedia and soma respectively).

Winston has an illicit affair with Julia. Both decide to join the Brotherhood, an underground revolutionary organization, and shortly thereafter are captured by the Thought Police;
Is Winston's affair with Julia illicit or a "honey trap"? How does the reader know when or if they join the "underground? Winston was a low level employee of the party, Last question I saw Winston posing as no real threat to the Party yet O'Brian felt the need to torture him to "right think" What was the threat? I too think 1984 is a great book.