In Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Huxley’s Brave New World, the authoritative figures strive for freedom, peace, and stability for all, to develop a utopian society. The Utopian society strives for a perfect state of well-being for all persons in the community, and over-emphasizes this factor, where no person is exposed to the reality of the world. As each novel progresses we see that neither society possesses family values nor attempts to practice them. Neither are passionate nor creative in factors such as love, language, history and literature.
Our society today, in general, is unsure about the future: The nightmare of total organization has emerged from the safe, remote future and is now awaiting us, just around the next corner. It follows inexorably from having so many people. This quotes represents Watts’ fear for the future; George Orwell and Aldous Huxley both explore the future state of civilization in their novels. They both warn us of the dangers of a totalitarian society. Both books express a utopian ideal, examine characters that are forced into this state and are compelled to dealing with this society and all the rules involved.Order now
The impracticality of the utopian ideal is explored in Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Huxley’s Brave New World. Both authors suggest that a lack of familial bonds, the repression of human individuality, and the repression of artistic and creative endeavors in order to attain a stable environment renders the achievement of a perfect state unrealistic. The lack of familial bonds, in both novels, contributes to the development of a dystopian society. This lack of familial bonds is evident through genetic engineering, the use of names, and a commonly used drug, soma.
One of the first mentionings of family in Brave New World is when the main character, Bernard, asks the Controller, the ultimate leader, about the past and why their society does not believe in families. His response suggests that authoritative figures do not believe that there is need for a mother in society and therefore, the Controller responds, “Mother, he repeated loudly rubbing in the science; and, leaning back in his chair, these, he said gravely are unpleasant facts; I know it. But then most historical facts are unpleasant.
The disregard for mothers as a valuable figure in life contributes to the lack of familial bonds. In Huxley’s Brave New World, human life is conceived in a bottle; the embryo no longer grows in the mother’s womb, and therefore no bond is formed between the mother and the baby. There are ‘bottle births’ rather than the birth of a baby from it’s mother. There are also conditioning centers, which become a home for all children for their entire childhood. In such circumstances, one does not receive the special attention that you would receive from a family.
Since they do not have family, they do not receive love during their upbringings, therefore the products of this society do not develop the values of love nor do they respect themselves as sexual beings. Orwell’s choice in naming the Party’s leader, ‘Big Brother’ in Nineteen Eighty-Four, gives the reader the impression that all of Oceania is like a huge family. There are no smaller individual families, which results in this society’s lack of close and intimate relationships.
The first description Orwell gives to his audience of Big Brother is, ” …standing like a rock against the hordes of Asia…doubt about his very existence, seemed like some sinister enchanter, capable by the mere power of his voice of wrecking the structure of civilization. ” This first impression of ‘Big Brother’ is a frightening and violent image. It leads families to believe that he is a poor role-model in depicting what the word ‘brother’ really stands for. “The word ‘brother’ is the name that one would use in a family.
The Big Brother, the Great Leader in Oceania, contributes to the lack of family values and the corruptness of the Party. It is not a justice comparison. ” Using Big Brother’s name so often takes away from the family ideal and begins to weaken family relationships. The use of soma, the perfect drug, acts as a negative replacement for familial bonds. When an individual cannot cope with the daily stresses of life they rely on soma, to turn their stress into an illusion. This acts as a substitute to dealing with their problems, rather than relying on family for support or advice.
Soma is an “euphoric, narcotic, pleasantly hallucinant… a holiday from reality. ” It leaves the individual with unresolved issues and results in an illusioned life; this is not fair to the family, who has to deal with the individual’s reliance of the narcotic. Soma has a negative effect on familial bonds, and contributes to the achievement of a perfect sate, which is unrealistic. Authority, in the novels Brave New World and Nineteen Eighty-Four have an immense effect over one’s identity and individualism, leading to a dystopic state.
This great lack of individuality is due to the conditioning process on the children, and the maintaining of a stable environment. In Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Huxley’s Brave New World everyone is identical. Huxley writes about the loss of human individuality. “Twelve of them ready to be made one, waiting to come together, to be fused, to lose their twelve separate identities in a larger being. ” Each citizen loses power and pride in their own identity. Every human being, in both utopian worlds, is conditioned to fit society’s needs.
In Brave New World, the DNA of a embryo is arranged exactly the same as several others, producing several twins. Then as a child, you are put through different drills and routines, including psychological conditioning, and “sleep-teaching”, forcing you to become a product of a certain class: Huxley wrote out of his scientific background and mass-produced his population in the fashion long popular in science fiction, growing them in bottles and conditioning them from birth in all the ways proposed by psychologists.
This shows that the products of the conditioning process do not know nor understand the realities of the world. They are hidden in illusion their entire life and are modified from the time that they are first placed in a bottle, to believe in the utopian ideals. In Brave New World, John, the savage sees the illusion. “You’re so conditioned that you can’t help doing what you ought to do”. John, the savage, points this out to Lenina, a product from the utopian society, but she is so caught up in the illusion that she cannot see the conditioning.
In Nineteen Eighty-Four, O’Brien, a member from the elite class, confesses to the corruptness of the political party, ‘…the Party seeks power for its own sake…Power is not a means; it is an end. ’ This shows the Party’s intentions in keeping society an illusion. They have power to do anything that they wish to do. Since this is true, the Party brainwashes thoughts into the followers heads believing that they live in a utopian society. Winston, in Nineteen Eighty-Four, has been brainwashed: Winston gazed up at the enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden beneath the dark mustache.
O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast! Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother. This shows the power that the Party and O’Brien has had over Winston; they have taken his old understanding and beliefs and transformed them into an attitude that complies with those of the Party. The conditioning of an individual for a utopian society often results in the repression of individuality.
Both novels attempt to create a utopian society. The major thing that holds these societies together is because they are stable. Stability is a goal for both Oceania (from Nineteen Eight-Four) and for the Brave New World. It reinforces the control and power of the elite class. “Stability means minimizing conflict, risk, and change. Without conflict, risk, and change, Utopia is realistic. ” When stability is attained, the world of Utopia becomes an illusion. Individuals that are stuck in this illusion can no longer see reality. The Party, in Nineteen Eighty-Four, creates goals, that they place all over the city.