Huxley's Use Of Conditioning In Brave New World
Aldous Huxley was a 20th Century author whose works warned audiences about the dangers of technology. According to J.E Luebering in English Literature from the 19th Century through Today, some may know him as the author of The Devils of London which is a psychological study of a historical incident and group of seventeenth century French nuns who were crossed over by hysteria (176). This story is important because it shows Huxley’s desire to break free from the “bondage of ego” (Rolo 75) Huxley was disgusted about the way modern technology took over society. This overwhelming hatred drove him to write Brave New World: a warning to modern readers to use technology wisely, for it can be powerful and dangerous.
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Babies and toddlers are shown flowers, and then shocked electrically so they will hate nature (60). The children are also allowed to play in the crematoriums so they will be alright with dying when the time comes (60). Another method of conditioning is Hypnopaedia, which is used to put the kids to sleep (60). The (intentional) irony of Hypnopaedia is that is what a very old method that rarely worked in real life (Clareson). This sleep teaching method was said to “inadequately teach information” (Clareson). Huxley used Hypnopaedia in the book to build the right idea in the book and make the audience believe the conditioning process more (Clareson).When they grow up they are never allowed to touch a book, and things such as art, music, literature, and movies are dulled down to a minimum to prevent creativity (60). This harsh conditioning affected the commoners in such a way that they deemed solitude unusual and they sought the most meaningless relationships (60). The authors stated that “If they did spend time in contemplation, they might, like Bernard Marx and Helmholtz Watson, start questioning the meaning of their lives and the function of the society”