Literapedia Book Notes for

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley


Characters

  • The Director (Thomas or Tomakin) (ch 1)— The Director of the Central London Hatcheries and Conditioning Center.
  • Henry Foster (ch 1)— A love interest of Lenina, he works at the Hatchery.
  • Lenina Crowne (ch 1)— A young female beta who is very beautiful.
  • Mustapha Mond (ch 3)— Mr. Mond is the Resident Controller for Western Europe.
  • Bernard Marx (ch 3)— an Alpha Plus Intellectual working in the Psychology department of the Central London Hatchery. He is not as attractive as others of his class.
  • Fanny Crowne (ch 3)— A coworker and friend of Lenina's.
  • Helmholtz Watson (ch 4, pt. 2)— Helmholtz is a dashing Alpha Plus Intellectual who teaches at the College of Emotional Engineering.
  • John "The Savage" (ch 7)— The illegitimate son of a Beta and the Director, John is a rebel and a Shakespeare aficionado.
  • Linda (ch 8)— John's mother. Linda was left on the savage reservation while on holiday and had been living there ever since.
  • Popé (ch 8)— Linda's Native-American lover. Popé gives Linda mescaline to keep her drugged and left her when she was ill.

Chapter Summaries

  1. The novel begins in 632 a.f. (after Ford) in the Central London Hatcheries and Conditioning Center. The director gives a tour of the facilities to some students and explains the new process for procreation. It is more reminiscent of an assembly line for maximum production and intricate specification (social class, height, intelligence, physical prowess).
  2. The tour continues into the Neo-Pavlovian Conditioning Rooms where the director explains two methods of teaching they employ. The first is a form of Classical Conditioning to averse the children from flowers and books and the second is a repeated record played while the children slip in an attempt at hypnophaedia, or sleep learning.
  3. The tour leaves the building to find hundreds of children engaging in encouraged "erotic play." Mustapha Mond makes his guest appearance and the rest of the chapter is a round focusing on Mond, Henry Foster, and Lenina Crowne's individual conversations.
  4. Lenina says that she would indeed like to take a trip with Bernard to New Mexico and rides the lift to the roof with him. She gets in a helicopter with Henry and Bernard gets in his own to visit Helmholtz at the College of Emotional Engineering.
  5. Lenina and Henry leave the golf course, go to a cabaret, then go back to Henry's house and have sex. Bernard finds he's late for his appointment at Fordson Community Singery where he sings hymns to Ford with large group.
  6. Bernard and Lenina go to a women's wrestling match and, later that, night have sex. Bernard tells her in the morning he had not wished the night to end the way it did. He asks the Director, who has heard of his anti-sexual sentiment and threatens to expel him to Iceland, for a permit to visit the Savage Reservation in New Mexico. He takes Lenina to the reservation.
  7. Bernard and Lenina walk through the reservation and make evident their different interpretations of actions our society would find relatively normal. They witness an Indian ritual and meet John "the Savage." John takes them to meet his mother, Linda.
  8. John recounts his childhood memories about his mother, the people of the reservation and Popé. After his stories Bernard asks if he would like to come back with them to London. John accepts, with Linda accompanying as well.
  9. Lenina takes a big dose of soma and passes out while Bernard tries to contact Mustapha Mond for their trip back. John is looking for Bernard but finds the sleeping Lenina. He leaves the room because he hears a helicopter.
  10. Bernard arrives late to his meeting where the Director and Henry had been talking about him behind his back. Upon his entrance, the Director proposes Bernard's deportation. Bernard then brings in Linda who attempts to hug the oblivious director then John enters, falls to his knees and cries father. The Director leaves the room hurriedly.
  11. Linda is in the hospital on a constant soma regimen while John is shown around and made familiar to the culture. Bernard and Lenina are receiving a lot of attention for their relation to the Savage. Lenina, who has a crush on John, takes him out to a feely.
  12. John refuses to speak at a gathering that Bernard has prepared and Bernard is publicly embarassed. Bernard has come down from his popularity and is now back to his normal self which John says he favors. Bernard goes to visit Helmholtz who is feeling some heat for the poem he wrote. Bernard introduces Helmholtz and John and they get along very well.
  13. Lenina pays John a visit with the intention of having sex with him. She forces herself on him but he backs away and threatens to kill her. Lenina locks herself in the bathroom and when John leaves after hearing his mother is very sick, she escapes.
  14. John arrives at the Hospital for the Dying to find his mother in a regrettable condition. She awakes, sees John, thinks he's Popé, realizes its actually John, then passes away.
  15. When he leaves the Hospital, John sees a congregation of Deltas waiting to receive soma. He becomes infuriated and throws the soma out of the window. Helmholtz and Bernard come to the hospital and Helmholtz comes to John's aid. Bernard is torn but decides neither to help or aid. The police arrive and quell the riot using gas and an audio recording.
  16. John, Bernard, and Helmholtz meet with Mustapha Mond in his office where Mond asks John if he likes society and John says he doesn't. Mond explains some of the tenets of the new society and the theories that the government is founded on.
  17. John and Mond debate about art and religion in society. Their conversation centers around whether it is negative or necessary to feel what are generally considered negative emotions.
  18. Helmholtz and Bernard are sent to an island. Bernard travels to a lighthouse to seclude himself but is discovered and swarmed by reporters, photographers and admirers. John hangs himself in the lighthouse.

Student Contributors

Chris Dawson