Saturday, December 02, 2006

Review: Brave New World

I recently read Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. I thought, hey! Here's a classic novel that paints a dystopian vision of the future, which may have startling implications for the present.

Not so much. What a snoozer.

Anyway, I wrote a short review of it on Epinions.com.

I read this book because it has always been hailed as a classic novel depicting some of the more ominous trends of “progress”. Like the aforementioned 1984, one often hears references to concepts and themes depicted in this book, and when one looks at policies that are being pursued by our government - for example, the rampant Ritalin fetish the education system has to drug kids into a pliant, sheeplike state of submission - the themes in the book come starkly into focus. The actual reading of it, however, is a different story. It’s incredibly disjointed and random. There is no real “plot” per se. As the book progresses, the book shifts focus to different characters, places and storyline in a seemingly haphazard way. The characters just seem to be vaguely disguised caricatures. Perhaps there is a certain irony here, as the Brave New World is rather chaotic and disjointed. The book, however, comes off as nihilistic.

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