Brave New… Straight to the point!

This is the first time ever that I read a novel to then watch a film based on the novel. Yes, this even includes Twilight and such ha!

To be honest, I really felt that the film was going to be super boring because it’s based on a novel, and the film was produced in 1998 with no special effects and stuff haha but I was sincerely shocked at how great it was! Yes, there was a lot of missing details that were left out in the film such as several important characters like Helmholtz etc. But I felt that it is important to capture the overall aspect of the novel, specifically the message the author was trying to portray overall instead of focusing on every single detail. So of course, several events and characters did not make it to the film but I think because of these changes it really helped the viewers, like myself, understand and feel what life is like in the World State from the perspective of the characters, rather than focus on the character’s dilemmas.

There are two reasons why I appreciated this version of the movie (although I cannot speak for the other version of the Brave New World film because I have yet to see it). First, I really enjoyed the directors interpretation of the ending of the film. In the novel, it ends at the moment where John decides to commit suicide, however, in the film, it showed the “family” that consisted of Bernard and Lenina and of course, a child. Because of the restrictions that the citizens of the World State endured, the ending brought hope of the chances of citizens to live a “regular” life like individuals. I feel that this decision helped me explore the idea of “what if” such as, what if Linda and John didn’t pass away? What if they remain alive and continue to spread awareness of life in the Reservation? How would things change? If a film builds a lot of questions in the end, I personally believe it is a great film (because people keep talking about it).

Secondly, I LOVE how the ending revealed the young boy who added earplugs in order to distract himself from being conditioned to what the World State wanted. When the scene occurred, I instantly thought about Bernard, which in the novel and film portrays him as the hope of the World State because he is different from the rest. I found it refreshing how this young boy decides to seclude himself from the World State and try to mold what the community wants him to be.

Overall, I really enjoyed this film regardless of the differences it has according to the novel. Yes it is true that perhaps the readers are not too fond of the differences of the novel to the film, but we have to remember that there are so many details that cannot be covered in a two-hour film. Plus, if the film had every-single-detail of the novel, then why would we read the novel in the first place? If all the details are revealed? That is why I believe it is better for a film and novel to be slightly different from one another in order for the consumer to enjoy both pieces.


Essay 2 Pre-draft

“I love—I am certain I can safely say, we love—only such a sterile, immaculate sky.” Immaculate sky, free from any flaw or in their terms “perfection.” The One State’s dictators and citizens believe in living in an ideal world where freedom is abolished and every single moment of their lives are controlled by a system. What stabilizes this system is all based on mathematics, where most of the time there is only one solution to every mathematical problem or predicament. There are other novels in which state their practices in what creates an example of a Utopian world but this novel is different, it is all numeric. The novel We  written by Yevgeny Zamyatin invites us to the One State’s world and mentality where freedom is replaced with mathematics. By having a mathematical system to control the living conditions in the One State it limits the chances of wrecking the system due to the table of hours, a form of one’s identity and strong belief in science.


Claim # 1

The table of hours decreases the chances of any of the citizens in the One State to become an individual.

“Fused into a single million-handed body, at the same second, designated by the Table, we lift our spoons to our mouths. At the same second, we come out for our walk, go to the auditorium, go to the hall for Taylor exercises, fall asleep” (12).

Claim # 2

Having a number instead of a name shows the dedication and commitment of sticking to the One State’s regulations.

“This irrational number had grown into me like something, foreign, alien, terrifying” (39).

Claim #3

Just like mathematics, science is perceived as a superiority subject that the One State believes in.

“It was not the generations before me, but I–yes, I—who had conquered the old God and the old life” (5).

Final development of D-503

The purpose of D-503’s personal entries is to write down and express how life in the One State is considered to be the ideal world of perfection by spreading happiness by secluding freedom from everyone’s lives. In his entries, he is directly speaking to those he plans to convert and bring to the One State. However, recently his entries have fallen off course to the original concept, D-503 expresses more his love for I-330 rather than the main objective as to why he decided to write in the first place.

It’s interesting to see the development of the character D-503 just based on his writings specifically, towards the end of his entries. Seems like in the beginning he was trying to avoid being around I-330 and prevent himself from falling in love with her for many reasons but I couldn’t help but think of one in particular. In the One State promiscuity is practiced by all citizens and I think this is pushed upon in order to prevent any form of feelings to develop between the numbers. If a number has feelings towards another number then it would not be considered a number anymore but that of a human being, an individual, something different. But yet, no matter how hard he tries D-503 gets closer and closer to feel like am individual in the One State, he states, “‘I cannot… Without you. I want nothing without you,’ I said, or merely thought–I am not sure– but she heard” (Zamyatin 185). At this point he does not think of himself, he thinks about others. I-330 is on his mind more than the tables of hours are, which is something completely different to that of another number. It’s almost to the point where he may perhaps be a little obsessed over I-330.

His journal entries surround the idea of the integral and as well as his profound love for I-330 but as the reader, I noticed that the farther he got from the original concept of the entries, that it soon became his personal journal. As he writes his thoughts and feelings into paper he has to consider that others will read this as well and be a witness of his torn relationship of the One State and the green wall. because of this fact, he becomes hesitant many times to even finish his thoughts, at times he begins a thought but never finishes. In one if his entries he states,”I am ashamed to read the last lines I had written yesterday. But it is all the same now; let them stay as a reminder of the incredible thing that might have happened–and now will not happen…no, it will not happen” (Zamyatin 178-179). This quote to me to shows how he is torn between expressing himself freely or keep in mind the real objective of these entries. Either way, I believe even though D-503 is conflicted in many ways it helps him reflect to maybe perhaps and think about what life outside the One State may be like as well as if he really did find happiness.

One State + Mathematics = No freedom

First and foremost I find the novel We by Yevgeny Zamyatin very refreshing as it is written in first person unlike the novel Brave New World. The decision to write in first person really helps the reader, like me, to feel and understand exactly what the protagonist was thinking and feeling during a particular time. It is refreshing to read a story that feels like we have the access to read the protagonist’s diary… Now, onto my analysis…


The One State is an example of what I call an organized society, period.

Before any assumptions are made, I am a supporter and believer of everyone pertaining their own freedom, but I feel that this particular world is very structured and seems like everyone is equal. Not free, but yet, equal.

When I read the first couple of pages of the book, the first thing I thought was “Hmm, if the One State is structured mathematically, then it means that there isn’t a mistake with its concept.” What I mean by this statement is, in most of our math courses we are given an equation to solve, once we think we found the right answer, we have to “check” to make sure it is indeed correct, free from any flaws. There is always an equation for another equation. This applies to the One State since they believe that if they live in a mathematical, structured, organized world, then everything will have a meaning (same as checking your answers.)

I found this extremely intriguing, perhaps because I enjoy math, because the thought never crossed my mind to associate mathematics to become the solution to a “perfect” world. But it makes perfect sense. The residents of the One State live by the hours, everything is scheduled in their lives. Personal hours, work hours, all is based on one particular hour. There isn’t much difference between the residents except that everyone has a particular letter and number that will identify them.

I initially thought they believed in the whole mathematical-structured life so that things are equal with everyone in society but I soon learned that the concept of using mathematics in the One State is to prevent individuality and freedom from entering the society. I couldn’t understand the concept at all and how it would prevent such actions, but the further I read, the more I understood. I-330 stated, “‘To be original is to be in some way distinct from others. Hence to be original is to violate equality.'”(Zamyatin 28). As I stated before, everyone who resides in the One State lives in a structured world in which everything is based on a time schedule. Which means, when someone works, so will the others, at..the…same…time… Which indicates that if someone were not to work at the time accordingly, they are considered to be violating the rules since they are the only ones who decided to do something different.

It’s interesting to learn that if someone doesn’t do what they are supposed to do at a particular hour, then they are violating the rules and are considered different from the others. I guess this means that D-503 and I330 will be considered individuals in the next few entries. We shall wait and see…


Farewell to “hope”

Gosh, I don’t even know where to begin… I am in complete awe.

Upon reading chapter 14-18 in Brave New World, I did not expect the ending to unravel the way it did. I felt different emotions within each chapter, some ranging from confusion to disappointment to finally unsatisfied.

I initially thought that because Bernard was different from the rest of the citizens in the World State, he was the chosen one to break the caste system. I was hoping for Bernard to be the “independent” one and spread knowledge and freedom upon others. As I read the further chapters, I realized that Bernard was changing unconsciously and to be honest I do not blame him. I mean, how could he prevent himself? He is surrounded by people who believe in the caste system, are supplied with numerous amounts of soma and are conditioned in many aspects. How was Bernard to protect himself from it? He couldn’t. Bernard began to change and follow the caste system and soon his independence started fading away and he became one of “them.”

I also thought that Bernard was the main protagonist in the story but upon reading the remaining chapters, I believe John was the main character all along. Sure we were all introduced to Bernard first but the impact and predicaments that John was exposed to resembled that of an independent person. John did not believe in the caste system nor agreed with the idea of conditioning and to know how the World State’s rules and regulation affected him has made the transitioning to main character possible.

Because John belonged in another place rather than the World State, he was able to gain freedom through reading, exploring etc. With John’s character I was able to visualize and understand how the regulations in the World State can corrupt an individual. When his mother passed, I believed that it was the moment where John had completely lost himself. Of course a piece of him had deteriorated by simply losing his mother but what stood out to me is the reason why she passed on, soma. Everyone in the World State idolizes soma, it may be even an addiction to others but I believe that drug symbolizes the containment of one’s freedom.

In chapter 15 John states, “‘Don’t you even understand what manhood and freedom are?… I’ll teach you; I’ll make you be free whether you want to or not.” And pushing open a window that looked on to the inner court of the Hospital, he began to throw the little pill-boxes of soma tablets in handfuls out into the area” (Huxley 193). Soma is what keeps the civilization going. I may be wrong but I believe soma is what killed Linda, her addiction to this drug has not only separated her from reality but she couldn’t even remember her own son! Soma is what keeps everyone in order no matter what circumstances they are in and I feel the more and more the citizens in the World State consume this drug, they become addicted to it but there are even worse consequences than that; as they consume each bit of tablets of the drug, they are segregating themselves from their own freedom, their own independence and they all don’t even know it! Which is the reason why I was hoping for John to be the spokesperson, to make a change and stop this civilization. However, as the controller states about the citizens in the World State, “They practically can’t help behaving as they ought to behave. And if anything should go wrong, there’s soma” (Huxley 199). Soma will always keep things in “check” and controlled at all times. If John was free before and was consumed by soma or even the state’s rules and regulation, then where is the hope for it ever ending? – There isn’t any hope, at least not anymore.

A controlled world

The first couple of pages of Brave New World and Brave New World Revisted written by Aldous Huxley caught my attention almost immediately. The title itself was confusing when trying to connect the ideas with utopias and dystopias, but as I kept reading, I merged and concluded the topics instantly.

Right away, I was astonished as to why the students visiting the facility worshiped the Director of Hatcheries and Conditioning to the point where his words were considered “gold”; the students took notes on absolutely everything he stated. I thought about the possible respect they had for the Director, however, what could he possibly have done or invented to be praised upon all? I was in utter shock to realize his work and his intensions to possibly create his own world.

The Director of Hatcheries and Conditioning is in charge of his own operation, in my opinion, like a laboratory to multiply and/or create human beings, specifically groups of twins by simply using one embryo. I thought about his concept and I concluded that he possibly wanted to have this method of creating human beings to populate “his world” and since they will be participants in his mind, they all shall be operated through him. The comparison I had in mind was forcing human beings to be a part of his creation, ruled by his own regulations without an opinion to be stated; kind of like slavery–to an extent.

But what was most shocking is the Director’s plan of conditioning upon the babies created by Bokanovsky’s Process, is that they intend to control the product of the embryos and have full control on how their lives will be. The author states, “No wonder these poor pre-modern were mad and wicked and miserable. Their world didn’t allow them to take things easily, didn’t allow them to be sane, virtuous, happy” (47 Huxley). This statement emphasized on the idea the Director had in mind, control. But why control the possible citizens in his possession? Why create duplicates using only one single embryo? What is its purpose?

While reading the first five chapters of the novel and connecting it to the english course I am currently enrolled in (topics of Utopia and Dystopia) I have convinced myself that the Director has envisioned his utopian world consisting of the perfect, full-control, over-populated citizens to be a member in his world. With the constant analysis, test tubes, examinations and so on, it is clear that the Director is focused on the idea of perfection and controlling every aspect of it as possible. I may be wrong, but why else would someone be this mad? To carefully and constantly make examinations in creating the perfect specimen and using operant conditioning to control them?

I believe the idea of operant conditioning is very powerful. I once studied this in my psychology class, although it was several months ago, I remember it vaguely. I remember there is a positive and negative conditioning, and although I don’t remember it perfectly, I remember the impact it had on the patient/target and how it controls their mind. The connection here is, by the Director of  Hatcheries and Conditioning, using conditioning to control the products of one single embryo, he may well be closer to creating his “perfect” world consisting of “perfect” citizens.

I may be wrong in theory but I strongly stand by it. As I read on the next chapters, it can make or break my conclusion. We shall wait and see.

No more pain and suffering

I believe at some point in time everyone tries to imagine a perfect world, with the idea of world peace being top priority. I have thought about a particular world but have never expressed my insights on it since it’s guaranteed not to occur since the world revolves around challenges (challenges people face on the daily basis).

My idea of a Utopian world is not far of from the world we live in today. I imagine a world where pain and suffering would be abolished. To wake up every morning and not worry about meaningless things such as bills, problems, money and all materialistic things. To wake up and take in the fresh air, to close your eyes and be thankful for another glorious day, to enjoy life and what it has to offer.

In my opinion, pain is an emotion that triggers your mind, heart and soul to break down and have a melt down whether it is a small or drastic melt down. In my world, this would not exist. Pain is categorized in many different levels: emotional, mental and physical. Pain can be shown by tears in someone’s eyes, the decision to self harm because of a particular pain one is experiencing, the loss of a loved one, and the list goes on and on. My Utopian world will abolish the idea of “pain,” pain in my world shows a level of defeat, the citizens of my Utopian world shall always rise no matter what obstacles they will face, what problems that my occur. By abolishing pain, it gives us all the mental, physical and emotional strength to strive and come up with solutions to move on and be strong.

With pain comes suffering. I personally believe being a witness or a victim of suffering can really deteriorate one’s life, heart and soul. Suffering is losing hope and I feel that is the worst feeling to have; knowing that there is no solution to end the suffering. In my Utopian world, there shall ALWAYS be a solution. No one shall suffer in any way, whether it is the struggle to make ends meet, a health problem and other predicaments where we experience pain and find no solution, we suffer.

My Utopian world doesn’t consist of materialistic things or live in a world that is considered “perfect.” But take a second and imagine, with the current world we live in today, imagine waking up one day and not have the slightest pain to worry about. Imagine you can live a day without you or the entire world suffering. Didn’t you notice how fresh the air really is? Now imagine, a world like this. A world without pain and suffering. People can work minimum wage, others are becoming rich by the second but at the very end everyone is doing well, not worries about money, any level of pain and suffering? A peaceful world you can say.

This is my idea of a Utopian world. Yes, there isn’t much of a difference in today’s world, but if you subtract pain and suffering from the original equation, we shall all become a powerful, strong, driven world where we all can live in peace.

Imagine it.

City of Omelas & Odonians EXPOSED

Shadows are mysterious; it resembles the idea of something unknown-something that is not identifiable. Ursula Le Guin, writer of The Day Before the Revolution and The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas, exposes the lurking shadows that are found in the City of Omelas and the past of Laia Asieo Odo.

As I began to read the literature piece The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas I did not expect this city to be connected to something so dark and deceiving. I painted this beautiful scenery in my mind as I began to read the first couple of paragraphs, Le Guin describes the “perfect” place, “perfect” setting and “perfect” people according to the city of Omelas. She described a place that seemed too good-to-be-true. As I kept reading, I could have never imagined what secret this city has been hiding or even what is the secret for having such a great city?

What separates this city from every other city?

The author stunned me when she stated, “I do not know the rules and laws of their society, but I suspect that they were singularly few…Yet I repeat that these were not simple folk, not dulcet shepherds, nobel savages, bland utopians. They were not less complex than us.” As I piece this puzzle, the city of Omelas is filled with Utopians, who believe in having a near perfect society, very well organized in all aspects in my opinion. This statement stunned me because I believe that perfection does not exist and those who strive to be perfect hide any possible flaw that intervenes with their goal-and I am correct.

As the author describes the secret the City of Omelas has, has had me in awe. It is very heartbreaking-cannot begin to imagine if I were that young boy/girl whose secluded from the entire world and no one cares to take me out of that predicament. But I keep questioning myself, what is the objective of having a child separated from everyone else? Why must every citizen in the town/city ignore this helpless young child? I find it interesting how the author states that once a child reaches a certain age, they visit the young child-maybe to declare some sort of warning?

Regardless, I think it is very inhumane to treat any human in such way, whether it is to help “perfect” a place (perhaps the citizens take out their inner rage on the helpless child in order to not expose any negativity to others?–who knows?!) or even through an obligation. It is just cruel.

There is some connection between The Day Before the Revolution and The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas, possibly the idea of Odonians?

What I grasp from this story is that a woman named Laia Asieo Odo is surrounded by Odonians, which possibly connects to the city of Omelas. Laia is a widow who has had a major stroke in the past and has affected her life currently. It is a little confusing to me to understand the main point of this literature since I feel like the character travels from the past and present constantly. This literature is a bit more complex than the previous story above.

Overall, both literatures from Ursula Le Guin are very interesting and definitely opens your mind about the ideas of perfection, secrets and how one’s perspective has an impact on others.

Very interesting.

Hello! :)

My name is Jessica but I prefer to be called Jess for short 🙂 My parents are from El Salvador but I was born and raised in New York City. My major is Communication Design and will strive to open up my design-related business in the near future. I have three major goals for the semester: 1) practice drawing any chance I get (I am a horrible illustrator at the moment haha!) 2) manage my time wisely (I HATE it when I am unorganized with my time) and 3) learn to breathe more haha! (seriously, to not stress over everything as far as assignments, work, relationships etc. Just overall, enjoy life at the moment and just breathe in and out 🙂 ) Sometimes at night, I like to walk around my neighborhood and reflect. It helps me appreciate all things around me and helps me become less stressed. 

The usual path I walk to reflect :)

The usual path I walk to reflect 🙂

My strengths and weaknesses as a reader and writer varies.

I personally believe that my strengths as a reader is identifying the elements within a story and analyzing the concept of each piece. As a writer, I feel confident writing in first, second and third person. I can express myself well through writing and can gather all my thoughts on paper. The only weakness I feel that I have as a reader is when I encounter a piece of literature that does not capture my attention at all. When I am challenged to read anything that does not interest me, my mind wanders to different places and no matter how many times I read it, I could not grasp the main idea of the story. Because of this weakness, I have practiced to overcome it; I now visualize the stories as I read them, and try my best to visualize them as if it were a movie. I am a visual artist after all. My two major weakness in writing are grammar use and correct use of punctuation marks. I try to overcome this weakness by reading more, but it takes a day at a time.

I feel comfortable with technology. I can alternate between a PC and MAC computer and am proficient in illustrator, photoshop, dreamweaver and indesign.

I have very little knowledge on the topic of utopias and dystopias. As I grew older I perceived “Utopia” as a place where perfection is located. Of course, I do not believe in anything being perfect so the idea of Utopia never developed pasted that. I am taking this course (ENG 2000) because it is a required course but although that is the main reason why I enrolled, I am pleased to learn more on Utopias and Dystopias 🙂 I hope to learn the history of Utopia and how Dystopia was developed, what was the perceptions on both topics at the beginning and now in history? Also, I am very pleased that we will be writing a lot in this course as it will help my writing skill to develop more.

Best, Jess 🙂