Brave New World Chapters 1-5

In the beginning, chapter 1 of Brave New World Huxley explains what the Central London Hatchery and Conditioning Centre is. It was described to be something like a factory. I pictured hundreds of people working with machines all day long. I then learned about the director and that is it people who are being “made” in the “factory”. These people have every aspect of themselves picked out and controlled by others such as their caste, predestination, the colors that they wear and from that, their whole life is determined and it will always stay that way. Once you’re predestined and set in a caste, you’re set for the rest of your life. I feel this is like a puzzle, mixing and matching pieces until something fits and comes together. Something like a person.

After reading Chapter 1,  Brave New World reminded me of The Machine Stops. The “Bokanovsky Process” was something where you could control fertilization and reproduction “one egg, one embryo, one adult . . . a bokanovskified egg will bud, will proliferate, will divide. From eight to ninety-six buds”. (pg 17) I thought that the “Bokanovsky Process” was crazy, that one egg could turn into ninety-six! Imagine it was really like that in real life and someone can give birth to ninety-six children? WOW.

I felt this process was similar to how the Machine in The Machine Stops controls every aspect of life. The Bokanovsky process and the Machine in my opinion are similar because they are both controlling life, Bokanovsky Process controls reproduction which makes life and the Machine is those peoples lives from birth to death.

In chapter 3 we are introduced to Lenina Crowne and Bernard Marx. These are the first two people Huxley introduces, stating their names and information about them. Before Lenina and Bernard, Huxley was referring to the other people but not giving anyone specific names. Huxley describes Bernard Marx as an Alpha plus which is the highest caste a person could be. This sounds like its a good thing me, but then Huxley writes that Bernard spends “most of his time by himself-alone” . . . “why are people so beastly to him? I think he’s rather sweet.” (pg 50) This then led me to think that Bernard is very different from the other people. Huxley then writes that when Bernard was being “put together” there was some sort of a defect/mistake. So I then found out that he is very much different from the others in his caste and society. Fanny describes Bernard as ugly and “so small” and that “smallness was so horribly and typically low-caste” (pg 51). Bernard knows he is different from the others and knows their opinions on him which is why he is making himself an outcast from the Alpha’s. In this society, if you are in a high caste that is good and people look up to you, unlike Bernard which people look down on. This is leading me to think that Bernard is going to be a major part of Brave New World.

I think that the first two chapters of Brave New World were interesting with describing the different rooms and levels but then continuing reading I lost interest. It was hard for me to read the long conversation between Fanny and Lenina (pgs 52-62). I felt that it was boring.

So far, I’m not enjoying this story. Although the descriptions and imagery Huxley gave was good and I was able to picture everything, I had a hard time focusing while reading and I was thinking about The Machine Stops because I think the way of life is very similar for the characters in these stories. I hope this story picks up and gets better.

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