Brave New World


Discussion Questions and Essay Topics

Study Questions

  1. American car manufacturer Henry Ford functions as a kind of secular version of God in the brave new world. What specific references to Ford make this clear? Why has Huxley chosen Henry Ford for this role?
  2. Mustapha Mond describes soma as “Christianity without tears.” What does he mean by this? Specifically, what are the parallels and the contrasts Mond is drawing between Christianity and soma?
  3. In Chapter 3, Huxley says of Bernard Marx, “those who feel themselves despised do well to look despising.” What does this tell us about Bernard Marx? How do Bernard’s actions in the novel support this characterization?
  4. When John is first introduced to Lenina, he finds her attractive and is drawn to her. In Chapter 13, he says he is in love with her. Yet, he resists her sexual advances and becomes violent with her. Why? What do John’s actions say about his concept of “romantic love”? What do Lenina’s actions say about hers?

Essay Topics

  1. Bernard and John are both protagonists in the novel, and they share a common dissatisfaction with the society of the World State. However, they have been raised in completely different worlds. In what ways are they similar? In what ways are they different? Compare the strengths and weaknesses of the two characters.
  2. According to one of the repeated hynopaedic phrases, “Everybody’s happy nowadays.” How does Huxley make it clear that this is not really the case? In what specific ways has the dystopia failed to create a society in which everyone is happy?
  3. In Brave New World Aldous Huxley projects a possible scenario for the future. It has now been more than 80 years since the novel’s publication. Are there any ways in which the world today resembles Huxley’s dystopian vision? Using specific examples of current trends in politics and culture, compare the brave...
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Essays About Brave New World