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Comparison Essay Between 1984 And Bnw

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Dystopias: Why they can be both Pleasant and Disturbing

Human interests play a major role in the agreeability of a society. Dystopias, in some cases, can actually be seen as utopias if one has been conditioned to believe it is, as seen in Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. However, if conditioning fails, or, is not exercised, even utopias can very easily become dystopias, such as in George Orwell's 1984. Therefore, what one views as a dystopia, another could easily see as a utopia, and vice versa.

Huxley's Brave New World and Orwell's 1984 are in many ways, very similar. Both novels incorporate class of people who only exist on the outside edge of the society, which the authors use to compare between societies which they believe we fear and what they believe is the 'better' society. Thus, the proles and savages are important devices which allow one to contrast to today's society. Through reading both novels, one can reach the belief that Orwell feared what we hate will ruin us, and Huxley feared what we love will ruin us. Furthermore, in both 1984 and Brave New World any family relationships are frowned upon and seen as uncivilized, therefore vastly discouraged by the society. In 1984, the government constantly interferes with the lives of the people using telescreens and children who are encouraged to spy on their parents. Marriages, on the whole, are selected mostly be the Party to ensure that there are no emotional bonds. By doing this, Big Brother can ensure that everyone, with the exception of a few citizens who will be 'cured' afterwards, is isolated. In Brave New World, the concept of the family is destroyed by having children bred in 'bottles', and words like 'mother' and 'father' becoming vile obscenities.

Both novels also contain (a) main character(s) (in 1984, Winston Smith, and in Brave New World, a split between Bernard Marx and John Savage) that is in quiet rebellion against the government, lacks individuality, and in general, managed to find peace at the end. Moreover, the governments in both novels do not view its citizens as individuals, nor do they care whether its people live or die. The 'care' reserved only for themselves and the continuation of the society in which they can do nothing and receive (almost, in the case of 1984,) everything. The citizens are forced to do all the hard work, with the upper castes in both books being an exception, and intelligence is suppressed. This is done through a variety of ways, the most prominent being the use of indoctrination brain-washing and prohibition of free thinking. Both novels contain a figure which appears almost God-like to the main character. In 1984, this is played by O'Brien and in Brave New World, the part is given to Mustapha Mond. Both Winston and Bernard/John have a hidden love for the leading lady, Julia and Lenina respectively, with whom they experience the forbidden feelings of what, in today's society, one might describe as humane. These feelings include love, passion, hate, pain, a sense of importance, etc. Although the novels take opposite stands on sex, the societies in both books aim for the same goal, to eliminate feelings of romantic love, passion and other strong emotional bonds.

In Huxley's Brave New World, sex is encouraged to ensure the citizens live a life of promiscuity, and reproduction is taken over by machines. The citizens of this world state are conditioned continuously to prevent any feelings from even occurring, a prime example in this case being Lenina, a young girl, whose head is filled with the suggestions of the World Controllers. "'Till at last the child's mind is these suggestions, and the sum of these suggestions is the child's mind. And not the child's mind only. The adult's mind too - all his life long. The mind that judges and desires and decides - made up of these suggestions. But all these suggestion are our suggestions!'" (Page 23, BNW) By demolishing the 'dirtiness' of sex, the sacredness has also been eliminated and thus efficiently eliminating any thoughts which may lead to deeper emotions.

On the other hand, in 1984 by George Orwell, the concept of sex is seen as a sinful act which should be practised only when they must, in order to do their "duty to the party." (Page 139, 1984) Love is prominently forced out once it is discovered, such as in the case of Winston and Julia. Their forbidden love was crushed and any loyalties to one another eliminated. They were



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