Kemper's Reviews > Brave New World

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
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Aug 10, 11

bookshelves: 2011, classic-lit, dystopia, future-is-now, playing-god, sci-fi
Read in August, 2011

I have to apologize for this review. The concept of this book was so outlandish that I think it made my mind wander, and you may find some odd random thoughts scattered in it.

Anyhow, this book was so silly and unrealistic. Like any of this could happen. In the far future the babies are genetically engineered and designed for certain stations in life with a large workforce bred to be happy with menial jobs that don’t stress them physically or mentally. I really should look into getting that data entry position I saw in the job postings. It’d be a lot less stressful than what I‘m doing now.

In addition to all the genetic modifications, the children are raised by the state, and words like ’father’ and ’mother’ are considered obscenities. Subliminal messaging through infancy and childhood also condition people to repeat idiotic platitudes as if they are genuine wisdom. I’ve been in a bad mood today. I need to turn that frown upside down. And since the world economy depends on constant consumption by the highest classes, they’re encouraged to be wasteful The collars on a couple of my shirts are a little frayed. I should go buy some new ones and throw the old ones out. and to engage in activities that demand spending and resource use. Should I get a new set of golf clubs? I lost my old ones when we moved, but I hadn’t played in a long time. But would I play more if I got new clubs? There‘s that really nice looking course right down the street. I don‘t know how they keep the grass that green in this heat. The population even gets to zip around in their own private helicopters rather than cars. Man, when are they going to come out with jet packs for everyone. It’s 2011 and I’m still driving around in a car like a chump. I want my jet pack!

Casual sex is actively encouraged. Wow. These condom commercials on TV have gotten really racy. The population is also programmed to be constantly partaking of some form of entertainment and to never just sit quietly and think I’m bored. Writing is boring. or to be alone Let’s check Facebook and see what all my friends are doing.

One of the sillier ideas is that the foundation of this society is Henry Ford’s assembly lines and that Ford has become the most revered figure in history. Like a businessman could ever become that popular. Is Steve Jobs making any announcements this week? I get itchy when there‘s no new Apple products.

While everyone seeks to be constantly entertained, all of the entertainment panders to the lowest common denominator. Hey, Jersey Shore is on! and the emphasis is on presenting it with gimmicks to engage the audience like ’the feelies’, movies that the audience can also smell and feel the sensation from. I wonder if they’ll re-release Avatar at the movies so I can see it in 3D again like James Cameron intended? At one point, a character complains about the feelies, “But they’re told by an idiot….works of art out of practically nothing but pure sensation.” I should go see that new Michael Bay Transformers movie.

Perhaps the most far fetched idea in this is that the population has been trained to sedate themselves with a drug called soma that relives any potential anxieties and keeps people from thinking about anything upsetting. I want a beer.

I guess this Huxley guy might have gotten lucky and predicted a few things, but he was way off base about where society was going.
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Comments (showing 1-50 of 91) (91 new)


message 1: by Trudi (new) - added it

Trudi Very nice :D


Stephen Outstanding...simply outstanding!!


[Name Redacted] I remember very vividly all the kids at my "alternative" SF-Bay Area high school ranting about how much they loved this book, about how society was trying to turn us into sheep just like in the book, about how they weren't buying into that crap. They then spent all their money on beer, pot, x, k, etc., had sex with anything that moved, spent countless hours watching torture porn and regular porn, and recited platitudinized versions of famous quotes from Marx, Engels, Buddha, Timothy Leary, etc.

Ahhh, youth.


Kemper Trudi wrote: "Very nice :D"

Thanks!


Kemper Stephen wrote: "Outstanding...simply outstanding!!"

Thanks. I reread your review before writing this and thought about just ripping you off, but I think I liked it a shade more than you did.


Kemper Ian wrote: "I remember very vividly all the kids at my "alternative" SF-Bay Area high school ranting about how much they loved this book, about how society was trying to turn us into sheep just like in the boo..."

Ah, to be young and sticking it to the Man again....


message 7: by Shovelmonkey1 (new)

Shovelmonkey1 Soma needed in liverpool to hault looting and rioting.


Kemper Shovelmonkey1 wrote: "Soma needed in liverpool to hault looting and rioting."

You need some of those soma gas guns to chill out those hooligans. Stay safe.


Julia I'm a bit confused about your review and whether you realize that the unrealistic-ness of the novel it the point. It's a dystopian novel which is supposed to be an exaggeration and a comment on current social practices. Just like utopian novels would never come true, neither would a dystopian.


Kemper Julia wrote: "I'm a bit confused about your review and whether you realize that the unrealistic-ness of the novel it the point. It's a dystopian novel which is supposed to be an exaggeration and a comment on cur..."

Uh...I really have to explain the joke here? I made a false statement that the novel is outlandish because Huxley was way off base in his predictions and then seemingly mock those predictions. Ah, but then I stuck in the random thoughts I'm having that actually show how right Huxley was. It's my way of highlighting how our current society mirrors the BNW society in many ways.

Or to put it another way: Me like book and try to make funny ha-ha out of it. But thanks for educating me about these DYS-TOP-IAN novels. Because I've never read a book like 1984 or seen a movie like Gattaca so it's a good thing you came along to set me straight. (And that was sarcasm, just in case I need to continue the humor lesson.)


message 11: by Stephen M (new)

Stephen M Funny review. The Michael Bay part was great.


Stephen Kemper wrote: "Uh...I really have to explain the joke here?

What was that middle part again?...(Bonus if you can name the movie.)


Kemper Stephen wrote: "What was that middle part again?...(Bonus if you can name the movie.)"

I'm drawing a blank. But apparently I'm the kind of guy who will put put a book on my dystopia shelf without realizing what a dystopia novel is. So I'm obviously challenged...


Stephen Kemper wrote: "I'm drawing a blank. But apparently I'm the kind of guy who will put put a book on my dystopia shelf without realizing what a dystopia novel is. So I'm obviously challenged."

It's Kevin Kline from "A Fish Called Wanda"...one of my personal favorites. Don't know what made me think of it, but I thought I would share.


Julia Kemper wrote: "Julia wrote: "I'm a bit confused about your review and whether you realize that the unrealistic-ness of the novel it the point. It's a dystopian novel which is supposed to be an exaggeration and a ..."

Clearly I offended you. But I never meant to be rude and I was actually confused by your review because I at no point interpreted the text as a prediction of the future.
I apologize for my unintended offense.


message 16: by Anne (new) - added it

Anne Great review!


Kemper Julia wrote: "Kemper wrote: "Julia wrote: "I'm a bit confused about your review and whether you realize that the unrealistic-ness of the novel it the point. It's a dystopian novel which is supposed to be an exag..."

Fine. Not 'predictions'. He wrote a book about a society in the future. I think the fictional society he came up with in the 1930's shares a lot of similaries with society today. I tried to play that for laughs in my review. Clearly I have failed miserably in your case.


Kemper Anne wrote: "Great review!"

Thanks.


message 19: by Cera (new) - rated it 1 star

Cera This *almost* makes me want to reread BNW. Almost. Not quite.


message 20: by Anne (new) - added it

Anne Kemper wrote: "Julia wrote: "Kemper wrote: "Julia wrote: "I'm a bit confused about your review and whether you realize that the unrealistic-ness of the novel it the point. It's a dystopian novel which is supposed..."

*snort* Stop! Stop! Too funny! Gonna wet my pants if you keep it up. *wipes tear from eyes*


Stephanie From reading these comments I guess some people totally missed the point of this book...how sad. Atleast they know what the definition of dystopia is...

Great review. Loved it.


Elizabeth so good


message 23: by Chie (new) - rated it 4 stars

Chie This is a fantastic review. I was afraid as I was reading that it's message would be missed by many, and that I also wouldn't understand some of it. Glad someone 'gets' it.


Shelby I have to agree with Chie. When I first started reading this review (the first 2 lines), I was annoyed, thinking, "you obviously didn't GET it!!" Haha... but this is an AWESOME review and I couldn't agree more... thanks for the great review and some laughs ;)


Calen Think of the time period which Huxley wrote this novel in. You obviously don't need me to tell you that the twenties came before the thirties, which is when Huxley wrote the novel. Think of all the correlations between BNW and the debauchery of the 1920s. It wasn't so much that Huxley was predicting the future but telling about the past through a different scope. As for his prophetic ideas I would attribute that to the fact that we humans have always liked sex, drugs, and anything that made them happy.


Calen us* not them


Messengerlikeyou Brilliant Review! LMAO!


message 28: by Margi (new) - added it

Margi Best review ever. Well done, sir!


Wendy Terry Interesting....

When we read it in 10th grade it was the late 80s, and even a bunch of 10th graders could see how insightful Huxley was in predicting things to come. (and much sooner than he actually predicts)


Chrisolu I would like to think you're kidding with your review. I'm sure you can see the commonalites in Brave New World and present day America.


Chrisolu Never mind buddy, I see your reply to Julia.
*leans in for a big kiss*


Kemper Chrisolu wrote: "Never mind buddy, I see your reply to Julia."

I'm glad we got that straightened out.


Seak (Bryce L.) This review was absolutely genius. I fully support a wandering mind under almost any circumstances. :)


message 34: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie How the hell did I miss this review Kemper? Really good....as per usual, but I think I liked your humor lesson even more.


Chrisolu Kemper wrote: "Chrisolu wrote: "Never mind buddy, I see your reply to Julia."

I'm glad we got that straightened out."



Yes dad :)


message 36: by Terry (new) - added it

Terry Nice one Kemper. Um, I'm still a bit confused though. Were you serious or not here? :P


message 37: by Harry (new)

Harry Kane I think we can assume that today's equivalent of soma is antidepresants. Huxley himself became later an LSD-peyote guru... He and Robert Anton Wilson share this - both in their last minutes of life asked their loved ones for a hit of acid, and exited tripping.


Kemper Seak (Bryce L.) wrote: "This review was absolutely genius. I fully support a wandering mind under almost any circumstances. :)"

Thanks! I was really trying to......Uhh... I forgot what we were talking about.


Kemper Terry wrote: "Nice one Kemper. Um, I'm still a bit confused though. Were you serious or not here? :P"

You just made the list, buddy!


Kemper Stephanie wrote: "How the hell did I miss this review Kemper? Really good....as per usual, but I think I liked your humor lesson even more."

You were probably busy stealing my time mower.


Kemper Chrisolu wrote: "Yes dad :)"

Now go do your homework.


message 42: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Kemper wrote: "Stephanie wrote: "How the hell did I miss this review Kemper? Really good....as per usual, but I think I liked your humor lesson even more."

You were probably busy stealing my time mower."


Oh yeah......that.


message 43: by Karilyn (new) - added it

Karilyn Any person that uses sarcasm so eloquently as you deserves my attention. Simply put: you crack me the f**k up, I like you.


Cecily I love this review. So apt and witty.


message 45: by Vido (new) - rated it 4 stars

Vido So for some reason I only just discovered Goodreads, and one of my favourite things about it so far has been the discovery of your reviews. Loved this one.


Kemper Vido wrote: "So for some reason I only just discovered Goodreads, and one of my favourite things about it so far has been the discovery of your reviews. Loved this one."

Ah, shucks.... Thank you! That made my day.


Bellomy Ha! Love this. It's one of the reasons I love this book.


message 48: by Tony (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tony Peters your review was clever and funny but your remarks to Julia were unnecessarily harsh imho.


Hallie Huffman I wanna read this based on that review!


Carol Giles Nobody has asked the obvious. Why four stars then? I'm reading it at the moment.


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