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Brave New World Mass Market Paperback – Import, 12 April 2005
Audio, Cassette, Audiobook, Unabridged, Import
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Now more than ever: Aldous Huxley's enduring "masterpiece ... one of the most prophetic dystopian works of the 20th century" (Wall Street Journal) must be read and understood by anyone concerned with preserving the human spirit in the face of our "brave new world"
Aldous Huxley's profoundly important classic of world literature, Brave New World is a searching vision of an unequal, technologically-advanced future where humans are genetically bred, socially indoctrinated, and pharmaceutically anesthetized to passively uphold an authoritarian ruling order--all at the cost of our freedom, full humanity, and perhaps also our souls. “A genius [who] who spent his life decrying the onward march of the Machine” (The New Yorker), Huxley was a man of incomparable talents: equally an artist, a spiritual seeker, and one of history’s keenest observers of human nature and civilization. Brave New World, his masterpiece, has enthralled and terrified millions of readers, and retains its urgent relevance to this day as both a warning to be heeded as we head into tomorrow and as thought-provoking, satisfying work of literature. Written in the shadow of the rise of fascism during the 1930s, Brave New World likewise speaks to a 21st-century world dominated by mass-entertainment, technology, medicine and pharmaceuticals, the arts of persuasion, and the hidden influence of elites.
"Aldous Huxley is the greatest 20th century writer in English." —Chicago Tribune
This book also includes the full text of Brave New World Revisited, Huxley's 1958 nonfiction followup to Brave New World.
From the Back Cover
The astonishing novel Brave New World, originally published in 1932, presents Aldous Huxley's vision of the future -- of a world utterly transformed. Through the most efficient scientific and psychological engineering, people are genetically designed to be passive and therefore consistently useful to the ruling class. This powerful work of speculative fiction sheds a blazing critical light on the present and is considered to be Aldous Huxley's most enduring masterpiece.
The nonfiction work Brave New World Revisited, first published in 1958, is a fascinating work in which Huxley uses his tremendous knowledge of human relations to compare the modern-day world with his prophetic fantasy envisioned in Brave New World, including the threats to humanity, such as overpopulation, propaganda, and chemical persuasion.
- Publisher : HarperTorch (12 April 2005)
- Language : English
- Mass Market Paperback : 288 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0060821418
- ISBN-13 : 978-0060821418
- Item Weight : 136 g
- Dimensions : 10.64 x 1.83 x 17.15 cm
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from India
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A decanted embryo is raised according to the caste it is predestined to born into. Alphas are breeded to be intellectuals and have excellent physical and mental conditioning whereas epsilons are conditioned to have stunted growth and low IQ so as to perform menial jobs. Once a child is born from the embryo , it is made to undergo a training program wherein it's reactions to various stimuli is engineered depending upon its caste and future job role. The juveniles are exposed to hypnopaedic learning or sleep teaching and also encouraged to perform erotic play to encourage promiscuity.
In the world state, there is no concept of religion, family or marriage. Women are born freemartins and don't give birth. All the residents are non- chastate and are promiscuous ("Everyone belongs to everyone else"). The world is depicted as technologically advanced where everyone commutes in a helicopter and residents are secure from all diseases and worries. They are kept in a false state of happiness with sex, drugs and music.
The residents of the world are conditioned not to question their existence or have an opinion on things. There are no history books or literature available to them. 'Soma' is a magical drug which removes their worries, anger and frustration and calms them. The drug is rationed to all the residents and they all are shown as its slave. The world depicted in the story shows no struggle for the residents and all of them are kept in a false state of happiness. Terms like vibro vacuum massage, sec hormone chewing gum and feelies ( movies where you feel all sensations) are a part of the false utopian world of the residents.
Other than the residents of the state world, there also exists 'savage' reservations. There is no specific protagonist in the story. There are various characters like Bernard Marx, Lenina, Helmholtz, John (savage), Linda ,Mustafa Mond etc. The story takes Bernard and Lenina to a savage reservation in Mexico where they meet John and Linda and bring them along to their world in London. The rest of the novel involves the Savage's point of view and his feeling with respect to the so called utopian world. The story with a few turn of events change the Savage's perception of the world completely.
The book is an excellent read. This book is equally good if not better than Orwell's 1984. Highly recommended.
"what do we want to want?", "what do humans want to become when we can achieve anything through technology?", "what is happiness to humans, is it the pleasure after suffering or can it be resolved with tweaking your brain!".
The book gets a little boring midway because of the writing but it picks up after that, so don't drop it.
That is all I can say without spoiling anything.
Top reviews from other countries
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 August 2020
I accept that the frame of reference from Huxley's era was very different to ours, sadly it doesn't translate very well to this story at all.
The thing about 1984 is the prophetic way in that it describes the 'future', our present day. Orwell's writing style is relaxing to read and allows you to become absorbed in the world that he expertly crafts.
Brave New World does none of this, it is an awkward, difficult read. Not in a fun, challenging way but in a structureless and clumsy manner. It's repeated returns to 'toddler's erotic play' are revealing more of the author's own obsession than a narrative on his predicition of the future.
The main characters are not given any flesh, and I was unable to find any common ground with any of them, and found myself unable to understand any of their, apparently, randomly changing motivations.
This text has very strong undertones of religious zealotry and tries to persuade the reader in favour of religion over all. Further, the constant copy-and-paste paragraphs from Shakespeare became tiresome.
Very disappointed in this book, I persevered in the hope of a satisfactory ending but found it to be rushed, confusing and ridiculous.
If you're looking for a classic that provides a 'prophecy of the future', read 1984 instead, don't bother with Brave New World, you'll only leave disappointed.
And also no art, no literature or true creation of any kind. No gods or spirituality, no adventure or surprises or passion of any kind, ever. No parents or families or friends or intimacy. No scientific advancement. No private thoughts. Everyone is for everyone else. Your time must be shared. You can never experience solitude and reflection. You can never have autonomy. Your words are not your own. Your body is not inviolate. If you are not like this you are shipped off to an island with the few other defective members of society who are like you. Whether that is lucky or unlucky is a matter of perspective.
Effing frightening stuff if ever I heard it. I loved this book more after I finished than when I was reading, because the challenge wasn't in accepting the world the characters inhabited, as it was really easy to digest because of its intentional tone (extraordinarily light, as if you're on a drug inducing you to be that way the entire time, hint hint), but accepting the world around me as being frighteningly familiar to it in some unsettling ways. It deosn't wholly reflect the world right now, but when it does it is in big ways. Though short it feeds enough into the psyche about our society as a whole, how we need suffering for heroism, mutual passion for love, pain and rejection for inspiration, and loss to understand the value of life - without these things creativity and progression are impossible. In Brave New World they are unwanted. Even sitting here now I'm remembering things that have so much more meaning after digesting than they did at the time. I suppose that's a good sign, being able to think...
Having been released in the 40s (and so forgiveness must be given for some more outdated things in it), I'm sure it was a frightening vision of the future like its fellow 1984. Nowadays, maybe it doesn't always get the same reception because we're slipping into a distracted world and are conditioned to not see it coming...even like it... There are so any things I could write now the layers are springing up, but I would probably write an essay. Or a book. It'd probably be something very much like this one.
As an added bonus, there was was also that moment I realised the film Demolition Man was clearly inspired by this book. That was a revelation.
Like 1984, this book shows you into a world where society works very differently. But this book mostly avoids pushing a moral judgement on the reader, leaving you to make up your own mind. And that can be tricky, as some of the aspects of the brave new world are appealing and others are revolting. Which is which will depend on the reader, so it's a great book for discussions!