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In the novel, Brave New World, Aldous Haxley explains to us the effect of technology on human lives and how it has changed people’s view on various issues in life. The novel gives more clear insight on reproductive technology and sleep-learning that lead to change in the society’s view of human life. He further explains that the state of the society’s future will be immensely affected by the changing technology and ideas that are generated today.
In chapter I, Aldous Haxley illustrates how technology, such as test-tube babies, has changed people’s perception of conception. In the novel, D.H.C(the Director of Hacteries and Conditioning) explains to his students about incubators, insulated doors with racks of numbered test-tubes, ova’s that are kept at blood heat and male gametes. The director says how they have to keep the temperatures at around thirty-five instead of thirty-seven. He further shows how the modern fertilization process is done; this explains how much technology has brainwashed humans and derailed them from what they believe in.
The novel shows a false symbol of universal happiness in this regime; this happiness is a chemically driven and technologically motivated fulfillment. Aldous Haxley writes about the world, where people use biotechnology to end a mental pain or any other form of misery. This solution was not available for humans before and it may do more harm than good. The new world described in the novel is loveless, unsettling and considerably sinister. The ideal realm according to the book is technology driven, and nothing natural should exist. For most people the brave new world described in the book is a nightmare. The technology involved is supposed to make life easy and painless. However, in the real world everything is different. In this era of post-genomic medicine the new discoveries can even splice our DNA and edit it that would make human’s life facile and long.
In the book, the writer comes to the conclusion that the price of the happiness that we get from technology may be too high for humans to bear; the sacrifice for this happiness may be family, motherhood, love, emotions, freedom and all other things that people value so much.
The technology gives satisfaction and happiness, wich one can get from sports (obstacle golf), mass produced consumer goods, promiscuous sex without consequences and drugs. These drugs are known to be life transforming; a good example is the drug called Soma, it makes one high and acts as a hangover free tranquillizer.
Most of the outcomes of technology that people cling so much on do not bring human growth but instead may lead to more self destruction. It makes people comfortable with their lack of freedom; it creates a penetrable wall between the real world and what usually goes on in the humans mind.
In the novel, Huxley seeks to warn readers against scientific utopianism. In the future, it is expected that it will be technically possible for genetic medicines and pharmacotherapy to re-engineer a person back to life after death. The genetically modified persons will be called trans-humans. Those creatures will be endowed with a greater capacity to love and care. They would be able to show empathy, and a great depth of emotions. The theory of natural selection may not exist in this type of society. With the diverse technology, humans can exhibit the extraordinary traits that make them most preferred and fit.
The novel Brave New World is about false happiness. Huxley comes to the conclusion that the abolishing mental pain and nastiness does not lead to the true happiness. The technology through drugs helps to get rid of bad or painful memories that person has ever had. One will only remember the happy moments from the past. Actually, this form of technology deprives people true happiness, which is inaccessible to utopians. Most of these utopians exhibit a common character trait - dissatisfaction; they feel meaningless. This is because humans find happiness and fulfillment in the contrast between the good and bad experiences that they have got in their lives. The ability to distinguish the difference between these two intense emotions is what makes people happy.
In this book, the brave new world is based on manipulation and control. In the real world, the survival and fate of person depend on the interplay between nurture, environment, nature and heredity. In the technological world other factors control their survival.
Even in this brave new world, not everybody is happy; this is exhibited by the various characters in the novel. For example, Bernard is disaffected and emotionally insecure because of the mistake done in the bottling plant.
The technology brings an imbalance to both nature and humans, and most of the changes have a negative effect to human’s survival and well being.