Freedom is a feeling that is very important for one to flourish in society, it allows one to feel happiness and sadness, and one must find the need to protect their freedom. Through games and social media people are can experience many different emotions, everyone is free to do whatever they want and the only thing limiting their freedom to the internet and their devices is the amount of time they are given to use these necessities. The actions that take place in the dystopian novel Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, gives a clear understanding to the reader that freedom is only achievable when one feels they have truly accomplished meaningful and important goals in life, one could attain freedom through knowledge, power and love as these concepts are always occurring in everyone’s life at some point. Viewable through the events in the book the most important message that the reader learns from the novel, Brave New World can show that people contain the will to be free, but the concepts required to be free are being suppressed by the world controllers.
Knowledge is a very important tool for people in our world today, people earn respect through their own knowledge as their opinions are very important for others to hear, if the people lower in the caste system acquire information they can better understand the world which can result in them stating their own opinions this can cause them to better understand the world leading them to revolt against people superior to them, and this causes the world leaders to suppress the knowledge. To begin with, Mustapha Mond fears that if knowledge is free for everyone in the caste system they will revolt against him and the other world leaders. Mustapha Mond prevents people from learning about the world by manipulating the amount of information given to others on science as viewable through his actions, “The author’s mathematical treatment of the conception of purpose is novel and highly ingenious, but heretical and, so far as the present social order is concerned, dangerous and potentially subversive. Not to be published.” (Huxley 154). Mustapha Mond rejects any media as if it gives to much information about science and religion as it may potentially be a threat to the world leaders, and because of this he does not allow information to spread. Furthermore, John has access to information about the older world by reading Shakespeare this results in him having more knowledge about the older world and the one he lives in currently. John while exploring a school asks referring to the younger children, ‘Do they read Shakespeare?’ to which the Head Mistress states, ‘Certainly not’ (142). John later feels different to know that the younger children of society do not receive information on older books which leads him to question why the world controllers do not allow people to gain knowledge as these action in his eyes limit the amount of freedom the children have in their childhood. Finally, Bernard avoids the use of soma, this causes him to act differently than other members of society as he does not follow societies ways. Bernard is approached by Benito Hoover in his state of sorrow and says, “you do look glum! What you need is a gramme of soma.” (52). Bernard’s behavior is very weird and not how an Alpha should be acting in society, but he does this to avoid the intake of soma as if he fears the intake of the drug. To end, Mustapha Mond and the world leaders suppresses knowledge through soma which is an important aspect in a person’s life as it causes people to act differently and with deeper meaning viewable through the actions of John and Bernard.
Power is an important factor for people in the world today, others respect those who rule over others because of their control as in the real world they receive authority through social standing, knowledge and money, in the novel only the people highest in the caste system or who see the world for what it is can control authority properly, and because of this people in the novel are forbidden to gain power as it being suppressed by the world leaders. To begin with, Mustapha Mond has the power to rule over others through his social standing by creating and breaking his own rules. Mustapha Mond explains to John that there are very few people who have ever read Shakespeare’s work as it is prohibited, “But as I make the laws here, I can also break them. With impunity, Mr Marx, Which I’m afraid you can’t do.” (192). Mustapha Mond suppresses others through his power even Bernard as he can make and break his own rules, and this causes him to use his social standing as a world leader to suppress others who act against him. Furthermore, John uses knowledge to convince Mustapha Mond to see the world differently through Shakespeare’s work. John is a fan of Shakespeare but dislikes a lot of things in the civilization of the novel as it is all new with not much meaning which leads him to suggest, “Something new that’s like Othello, and that they could understand.” (193). John attempts to change Mustapha’s mind by telling him about original works of Shakespeare which in the controller’s mind is too old for his world so he does not allow it to spread to the younger children of society. Finally, Bernard fears to lose his own freedom and power leading him to do anything to protect it which can corrupt him. Bernard’s violent behavior takes place after Mustapha mentions he will send them to an island which leads him to wonder why, “Send me to an island? You can’t send me. I haven’t done anything. It was the others. I swear it was the others.” (199). Bernard’s fear of losing his status and power lead him to act violently and unseemly to protect it this is very important as Mustapha uses his rule to send Bernard away to give him soma as it will calm him down, suppressing his feelings resulting in him losing power as he is not capable of controlling it. To end, power is achievable through social standing, knowledge, and soma viewable through the actions of Mustapha Mond he uses social standing, knowledge and soma to control others, so they cannot stand up against him, John uses his knowledge to have a deeper conversation to help others understand him better and Bernard fears losing his power by not taking soma as this suppresses his feelings.
Love is an important concept that is experienced in the real world through two people and it is required to be an active member in society later in life, in Brave New World love is an empty emotion not experienced, but exploited through everyone around them at a very early stage in life, and the world leaders have created a society that forces people to not share the experience with a single person. To begin with, Bernard feels out of place in society as everyone else is open with their relationships in society and Bernard is not as open with anyone. Lenina publicly announces her relationship with him by happily stating, “‘if you still want to have me'” leading Bernard to act uncomfortably and respond, “‘Hadn’t we better talk about it somewhere else?'” (50). Lenina openly talks about her relationship with Bernard, but after his behavior she wonders what is wrong with him because it is not how an alpha should behave in society as it is normal for people to behave the way she is, but Bernard feels uncomfortable in public, and he feels he should keep his relationship private. Furthermore, John loves to read Romeo and Juliet and craves to have a similar experience. When Helmholtz listens to John reading the play, he starts to laugh uncontrollably when he wonders “who’s going to get excited about a boy having a girl or not having her?” (162). Helmholtz believes that it is not normal for people to behave in such a manor because it defies the way society works in the novel as people always have each other and do not hesitate, but as Helmholtz listens to more of the play he starts to laugh at the way Juliet acts when she refuses to marry anyone, and since Helmholtz always has others he does not know that his feelings are exploited in sharing it with everyone around him. Finally, Lenina is an ideal member of society as she is very open with her affairs, shares it publicly with others and is not afraid to have anyone which is normal for people in society of the novel. Lenina has tried to get John, but wonders why he does not want to be with her leading her to state, “I wanted you so much. And if you wanted me too, why didn’t you…?” (169). Lenina’s behavior is normal as it is encouraged for others to have others and not feel shameful about it, she acts as anyone would which shows how the world leaders have made a world where they exploit the feeling of love and suppress it, so no two people experience it together. To end, love is overused by people in society, so two people may not share it as it is viewable through the actions of Lenina because she does not limit herself to one person, and is confused when approaching Bernard and John as they try to avoid her because they are not as open as well as do not agree with her ways.
To finalize, it is clear to see that in Aldous Huxley’s, Brave New World, that the world leaders are suppressing the will to be free of the people in the society by limiting knowledge, crushing power and exploiting love. As such, freedom is only achievable for those willing to search for it in the novel and those willing to fight for it. Through the acts of Bernard and John the knowledge they have is rare as normal people do not have it, Mustapha has power over others leading him to influence other people’s opinions and love is something people in society take advantage of as it is normal for character like Lenina, which shows that the concepts knowledge, power and love all in the real world are present resulting in everyone being free to do what they want and these concepts are missing in the novel resulting in them not being free. To conclude, the world leaders are suppressing everyone’s will to be free this results in people losing the will to do what they want as it is being suppressed. Therefore, the most important message the audience learns from the book is that freedom needs to be limited to be protected.
Huxley, Aldous. Brave New World. Random House of Canada Limited, 2007.