English 12 CP
29 May 2015
1984 vs Brave New World Compare and Contrast Essay
Totalitarianism diminishes the idea of individuality and destroys all chances of selfimprovement, and human’s natural hunger for knowledge. In George Orwell’s famous novel,
“1984”, totalitarianism is clearly seen in the exaggerated control of the state over every single citizen, everyday, everywhere. Totalitarianism can also be seen in the book “Brave New World” by Aldous
Huxley, in which humans are synthetically made and conditioned for their predestined purpose on earth. The lack of individualism will lead a community towards a dystopia in which freedom is vanished by the uncontrolled power of the state.
Both novels can be seen as a “warning” sign for the upcoming generations; warning them about the ramifications of uncontrolled power, technology and science. “In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it. It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it” (Orwell, 2010). This quote revels how powerful the state in 1984 was. The control was absolute, to such level that everything the party said will soon be true. Another example of this is Winston’s job. He worked as an editor of the news that will be transmitted to the community, no truth could be proven true, and you just had to believe it.
“1984” stresses the uncontrolled power of the state, but on the other hand Brave New World depicts more the abuse of new technologies and scientific achievements as means of control. “One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them.” (Huxley, 2010). Humans in Brave New
World were synthetically made in factories that allowed the state to manipulate every single aspect of the human being made. Humans were born into an specific caste that had an specific job on the
community. That was the first step for conditioning humans, the next step was the abuse of the drug soma, which let them completely sedated and submissive, and therefore vulnerable for the party’s purposes. Both societies abused of power in certain ways, this created a totalitarian state that resembled a dystopia. A society in which no real sense of individuality exist, will inevitably succumb into a dystopia in which freedom and curiosity are upstaged by a totalitarian regime. Big Brother and the party controlled every aspect of life, even thought, as seen in the following conversation between Syme and Winston. “Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it” (Orwell, 2010). In “1984” every “out of the box” thought is considered a crime and a threat towards the party. Not only this, but also no sense of individualism existed. There was no hierarchy,
Big Brother was on top, and underneath him everyone was the same, belonging to the same caste, so to speak. On the other hand, in “Brave New World” humans were “born” into a determined caste, with certain biological benefits or disadvantages. “"Reducing the number of revolutions per minute," Mr.
Foster explained. "The surrogate goes round slower; therefore passes through the lung at longer intervals; therefore gives the embryo less oxygen. Nothing like oxygenshortage for keeping an embryo below par." Again he rubbed his hands” (Huxley, 2010). Humans are manufactured and customized to meet an specific role in the community. In BNW, Ford is seen as a god because of his revolutionary techniques for mass productions. This symbolizes the lack of identity found in these humans; inside your caste you are exactly the same as everyone else. The worst part is that the conditioning process made everyone think that what happens is normal and even that lower caste thought that their position was fair and just. Humans