Bernard’s Other Half

Reading these chapters this story got really interesting. In these chapters there’s many characters involve, such as Bernard, the director, Linda, John, Lenina, Helmholtz. Through the three chapters they go back and forth with all of them. Several things occurred. The director’s leaving, Bernard’s change in society and with himself, Lenina felling rejected by John, and it’s crazy I but Linda appears in the beginning of chapter 10 and chapter 12 ends with her, she also was having conflicts, but it wasn’t with someone but a thing. Soma.

As soon as Chapter 10 starts , we discover the director was going to send Bernard to Iceland , and to make an example out of him, he was going to do it in front of a crowd. But the predator quickly became the pray when the Director asked : “can you show any reason why I should not now execute the judgement passed upon you? (Huxley, 139)” when the director said that, that was when he future was written down, because then  Bernard came in with a woman and he said “There he is’, pointing at the Director. ‘Did you think I didn’t recognize him?’ Linda asked indignantly; then, turning to the director, ‘of course I knew you; Tomakin,’ (Huxley, 139)” And everyone was disturbed to see the appearance the woman had, that was walking in. And of course this woman was no other than the Woman that the director had left back in the Savage reservation and he had thought he had lost her there. And what was more shocking was He left her pregnant. And right away John comes in and kneels to the director/his father and cried out Father! Everyone burst in laughter if course because the action John took to the director. After this, there was no way the director could remain in charge so he renounced at his place. And it seemed like Bernard was able to stay.

Bernard bringing John to The world state bought popularity to him making him change he was of being. Bernard had gotten the attention of so many. He was finally getting accepted into society. “Bernard now found himself for the first time in his life, treated not merely normally, but as a person of outstanding importance. There was no more talk of alcohol in his blood..(Huxley, 144) ” Everyone wanted to be with him, he was started to spark interest in a Chief , a Director and other important people. We then notice he started to change drastically, he wasn’t the same person we had seen at the beginning. The popularity and the attention was changing him. He started to talk to his very close friend Helmholtz about his sex life, and how it changed and he was having so many girls come up to him. Helmholtz of course wasn’t amused to hear this, and Bernard noticed it and just thought he was Jealous of the many girls he was getting. “Helmholtz shook his head. ‘I’m rather sad, that’s all.’ He answered. (Huxley ,145)” Helmholtz had a point in being like that, Bernard wasn’t the same after the trip he had taken. Instead noticing he was wrong (Bernard) he just walked away and said “never would he speak to Helmholtz. (Huxley, 145)” I felt as if that was the moment in which Bernard embraced this side of him.

We later find out in chapter 13 that Lenina is another character going through some changes as well. In this cheater they mostly focus on her and her feelings and her thoughts of John. And she admits she can’t let him go.  In chapter 11 she took him on a taxi ride in a helicopter, which is called a taxicopter while being there they watched this movie and John didn’t like it one bit. After getting to Lenina’s house, Lenina expected John to go into her room and have sex with her, but she was shocked to get the total opposite. John left in the helicopter leaving her Alone. After this , it left her obsessed with him , and she wanting to be with him was even more now. She explained this to her friend Fanny and she said : “well. You must persevere,(Huxley, 171)” she later also said “Nothing can be achieved without perseverance. (Huxley, 171)” Basically telling her to not give up on him, to go and get what she wants. She tries to seduce him, but he doesn’t want that, he loves her but he doesn’t just want to sleep with her. He wants there to be a relationship between them. Marriage. When he tried to explain it to Lenina she of course freaked out and said what a horrible idea that was. He tried to explain Marriage, he said : “For always. They make a promise to live together for always…….it’s like that in Shakespeare too. ‘If thou dost break her virgin knot before all sanctimonious ceremonies may with full and holy rite……’ (Huxley, 174)” He even bought up Shakespeare to her, even though she wasn’t going to understand it,mi felt as if he wanted to let out what he felt. The Shakespeare book has a lot of meaning for the savage or John. I feel as if its a guide for him, he wants what the characters in the book feel , the emotions they feel, Love. But even after this whole explanation he gave her, she just wanted to be with him in that moment . And John really didn’t like that, he started calling her a whore, and started getting really violent with her and threaten her , he would kill her. She was trembling of the way he was acting, she locked herself in the bathroom and wanted to wait until he left, and for some weird reason he left unexpectedly.

Linda was a victim of of mescal and Soma. These two things are similar in so many ways and we noticed that since chapter 7 , she couldn’t live without soma and so when she was stuck at the savage reservation she looked for something similar to Soma and she found Mescal. Her daily routine was to drink mescal. And now that she returned “home” to the world state, she demanded soma! As the book said “Greedily she clamoured for ever larger, evermore frequent doses. (Huxley 143)” She missed it a lot , and that wasn’t a good thing. “The return to civilization was for her the return to soma,(Huxley, 142)” she only had eyes for soma. But there was a problem, the doctor started explaining to Bernard what was happening to Linda: “One day the respiratory centre will be paralyzed. No more breathing. Finished. (Huxley, 143) ” She is going to die soon. Going back to the situation with Lenina and John in the room, right when John was really furious at Lenina, the reason why he left unexpectedly was because he received a call and it was concerning His Mother.

A New Bernard

Chapter ten opens with the Director speaking about Bernard. The Director says “the greater a man’s talents, the greater his power to lead astray. It is better that one should suffer than that many should be corrupted” (pg 137) I took this as the Director feeling very threatened by Bernard and how he is different from the World State. I think what the Director meant by “the greater his power to lead astray” is that because Bernard is different and he’s not trying to be the same as everyone else, he will try to influence others on having a different life, outside the World State. We as readers know what Bernard feels about the caste systems, promiscuity, personal relationships and family. I think that the Director is scared Bernard will try to convince people to join with him and rebel against the World State.

These concepts of family and personal relationships, which are something very normal to have in real life, is actually forbidden in the World State. There is no such thing as “family” because there is no natural birth, but the Bokanovsky process. Promiscuity is what should go on in this society, I think this is so people don’t start having feelings for one another. What I took from the Director saying “It is better that one should suffer than that many should be corrupted” (pg 137) is that its the right thing to do to send Bernard away to Iceland, so he will be gone from the World State. I think what the Director meant by “corrupted” is that because Bernard is a smart person he may have an influence on others on disagreeing with how the World State is “operated” and if people start seeing that, they will corrupt the World State and want to change it.

Continuing reading chapter ten, Bernard gets back from his “holiday” and meets with the Director and many other people in the World State. Bernard brings Linda and John with him. I think this was to try and sabotage the Director for sending him away. Linda walks through the door and everyone in the room was horrified, they couldn’t believe what they were seeing. Linda starts calling the Director by his real name Tomakin, she says that he made her have a baby! (pg 140) The Director automatically starts making it like Linda is crazy and denies everything because he is in front of all the people of the World State. John then walks in and yells “My Father” (pg 140) This revealed that even the Director of the World State, doesn’t follow the rules, he fathered a child, without Bokanovsky process. This really showed the inconsistencies and the conflicts of the World State. Bernard is standing up for himself and I feel that it’s his own personal payback when he brings Linda and John to the Director.

After reading chapter eleven, I found many aspects interesting. On page 148 Bernard writes about John “The Savage”, Bernard writes about how John doesn’t want to take soma, and he writes about Linda, John’s mother. What I found interesting was that Bernard doesn’t even write out the word mom, but he writes m – -. This concept of family is still so foreign to Bernard, but he did imagine what life would be like having a real family in previous chapters.

Another thing that interested me was when Dr. Gaffney, Miss Keate and The Provost were all giving John “the Savage” a tour of Lupton’s Tower and the school. While walking by the school library, John asks if the students read Shakespeare and quickly the Head Mistress answers with “certainly not” while blushing. (pg 150) Dr. Gaffney says the library “contains only books of reference. If our young people need distraction, they can get it at the feelies. We don’t encourage them to indulge in any solitary amusements.” (pg 150) In the real world Shakespeare is highly read and a very popular writer, and when John asks about Shakespeare the others act like Shakespeare doesn’t even exist.

What I got from this weeks reading is that Bernard’s character is changing.  He is starting to associate with others, but he did say he liked being alone.  He is becoming popular with the people around him. I also saw that Lenina is changing and she says “because you see, Fanny, I like him” (pg 153) Before Fanny was always following what she was supposed to do in the World State, not wanting to be different like Bernard.



Bernard’s Intoxication of Success

While reading chapters 10-13 I noticed a whole new side to Bernard. In the earlier chapters I never questioned his authenticity until now. Before he would not take soma or undergo social activities and would spend time alone “I’d rather be myself, he said. Myself and nasty. Not somebody else, however jolly” (Huxley 89) yet now we see him taking soma to detach himself from facing issues and emotions “he thought better of it and took four tablets of soma” (Huxley 161).

Our first interaction with the new Bernard is found in chapter 10 in which the Director tries to humiliate and transfer Bernard to Iceland yet Bernard stands up to him and flips the coin around. He ended up “humiliating” and causing the Director to quit his job due to news of him fathering a child in the Savage Reservoir. At this point we start to see an emotionally stronger, standing up for himself while also having the spotlight on him “Yes, I can. Bernard answered in a very loud voice” (Huxley 139).

I began to notice a whole new Bernard once chapter 11 began, it was a Bernard which was popular and talked about in a good way throughout the place as if he had made a great discovery. At this point he began to live off the hype of bringing John and Linda to the World State and began to live a celebrity life while partaking at the normal/usual male activities done in the society. Before he was rarely sleeping around with various women, yet now he has a women for each night of the week “And I had six girls last week, he confided to Helmholtz Watson” (Huxley 145). By Bernard having John’s custody and presenting him to important people and places in the World State; Bernard has gain huge popularity and is considered important, he no longer seen as an outcast and he himself shows us that his sense of ego has increased “Bernard now found himself, for the first time in his life, treated not merely normally, but as a person of outstanding importance” (Huxley 144). This was the point in which I knew Bernard’s authenticity is questioned and how he always had this need of trying to fit in with society’s standards. Other characters also began to “respect and admire” Bernard, such as Fanny. Early in the story Fanny and other characters felt pity and found him queer yet now he is portrayed as sweet, desired and intelligent. This was Bernard’s king of the hill moment he had everything he could want, all thanks to John and Linda. Bernard became a character who thrived off John’s and Linda’s existence, and this I found very immoral.

The most surprising part from the reading was to find out John not going to the party to be introduced to the important people in society, the elites such as the Arch-Community-Songster. This caused the party to fall apart and the invited people to once again begin to degrade Bernard once again. Bernard was desperate and foresaw all of his popularity, social status and thrives slipping through his fingers “The intoxication of success had evaporated” (Huxley 163). At this point we officially see Bernard’s internal need of being recognized. This internal conflict which he had faced is now superficial and shown to us to place Bernard back to outcast character which was presented in the beginning. This is also observed when he wakes up from taking soma and John is happy to see him back at his humble sense of being “You’re more like what you were at Malpais” (Huxley 163), even Helmholtz is somewhat happy to have his old friend back. Yet Bernard is not happy about looking his luscious life. These couple of chapters are a roller coaster ride for Bernard’s character, and looking forward to what will happen in the following chapters.

Brave New Bernard !!

As i continued reading Brave New World ,  Bernard character fascinate me even more . For the reason that he returns back with one goal and that was to keep his job and stay in the world state. In Chapter 10 Bernard arrives back to the Hatchery and stands up to the Director. The Director in had other plans. he discussed to Henry that he wanted to humiliate Bernard in front of every one and make an example out of him , The part i enjoy reading was when the Director calls for every ones attention and puts Bernard on the spotlight. The Director lets Bernard give one reason why showed he be allowed to stay and thats when Bernard first bring out Linda ” Those undistorted faces, a strange and terrifying monster of middle-agedness, Linda advanced into the room” Pg 138 Linda Explains to everyone that The Director made her have a baby in which John Walks in , and drops down on his knees in front of the Director and tells him my father . The Director shocked and embarrassed walks out the room. This shows a lot about Bernard because not only did he stand up to the Director but in front of everyone he also proved that things can change, decision can change, that change is possible in the world state

As i kept on reading i learned that the director had resign immediately after being humiliated by Bernard. But something i was confused about why was the other referring to john as the Savage. Was it because he wasn’t from the World State ? Or because he was the Director son. Everyone wanted to Meet John The Savage Man from the reservation. But no one really seem to care about Linda John’s Mother. “This was by far the strongest reason for people not wanting to see poor Linda, there was here appearance. Fat , having Lost her youth, with bad teeth and a blotched complexion.” Pg 142 Linda felt isolated that she touch as much as twenty grammes of soma a day. She felt like that was the only way she was able to stayed relax and wouldn’t care what any one else thought of her.

i Learned that Lenina has a crush on John she states that she never had sex with a savage man. Confused with her emotions on what she feels for john and being unsure if he likes her too he takes him on a feely. After getting of the taxi Lenina expects john to stay with her but he didn’t want to for the fact that he didn’t want to have sex with her. ” But John .. i thought you were … i mean aren’t you?” Pg 157 Lenina tells john expecting he would stay with her. But he didn’t he went back to his room and read Othello. After Failing to Seduce John the first time she takes soma and looks for john. Turns out after all John feels the same way for Lenina but he didn’t want to tell her for the fact she wouldn’t like the fact of commitment . I think John says this because when Lenina first arrived at the new mexico reservation all she talked about was ford and how people were so pose to do to a certain job. That everyone worked for everyone . and no one belonged to no one . But I’m noticing a change in Lenina she’s catching feelings.

Complexity in the World State

Chapters 10-13 of Brave New World delve deeper into the complexity of how the World State manipulates its people psychologically and the ways in which those who see past it try to live their lives. Author shows the reader the struggles faced by those who try to resist and the ways that they communicate and form bonds with each other. I think Huxley is illustrating what humans will do in desperation when they feel isolated but have some hope.

The system of manipulation becomes clear when Bernard and the Director have a confrontation in which the Director deliberately denounces him in front of everyone: “ he has proved himself an enemy of Society, a subverter, ladies and gentlemen, of all Order and Stability, a conspirator against Civilization itself”(Huxley, 138).  Bernard, in turn, attempts to do the same to him and somewhat succeeds. Huxley is showing the reader the brilliance of the social control that is the World State. Here is a system where people become experts at self-policing because the fear of public shaming and being outcast from society is unbearable. If people are terrified of being outcast and humiliated, this drastically minimizes the amount of actual force needed to control a society. Here, I think Huxley wants us to think about the ways in which we unconsciously keep ourselves in check to benefit the powerful.

I think chapter eleven shows both compassion and cruelty of this society. When it becomes clear that Linda will die soon if she continues on the soma, society does not try to stop her but assumes that she is a worn out piece of machinery that has had its time and now must die. ” The return to civilization was for her the return to soma, was possibility of lying in bed and taking holiday after holiday, without even having to come back to headache or a fit of vomiting, without even being made to feel as you always felt after peyotl, as thought you’d done something so shamefully anti-social that you could never hold up your head again (Huxley, 142). Linda represents the escape that everyone secretly wants from this society.  In soma, she has escaped and is living out her last days in bliss. The above passage about Linda particularly struck me as ahead of its time. I feel as though the modern widespread use of anti-depressants and prescription painkillers could be understood as an escape from the misery of our highly predictable, controlled world where we can often feel like slaves that have no access to the real truth about life.

Throughout these chapters, Shakespeare references are found everywhere and they are used in a way to show who is really socially conditioned and who is not. Shakespeare verses seem to be recited often in these chapters as a way for John and Lenina to reinforce what they believe “for all the time he was seeing himself as Romeo and Lenina as Juliet (Huxley, 167)”.   Shakespeare is used to show the reader that although Helmholtz may not be completely consumed, he still can’t really think outside of his conditioning and will never really “get it” the way John does. “Why was that old fellow such a marvelous propaganda technician?”(Huxley, 169).  Author may be suggesting here that the artists or at least those who appreciate the arts will always be the ones who see through hierarchies and control.  In summation, chapters 10-13 reveal the design of the World State as a system in which the fear of shaming does most of the work for those in control.

The New Bernardo

After returning to London from his trip to the reservation, Bernard became a brand new person.  Now that he had brought John and Linda to London with him, Bernard gained a new reputation from the people who once treated him so poorly.

In the beginning of chapter 11, Huxley states “Bernard now found himself, for the first time in his life, treated merely normally, but as a person of outstanding importance.  There was no more talk of the alcohol in his blood-surrogate, no gibes at his personal appearance.  Henry Foster went out of his way to be friendly; Benito Hoover made him a present of six packets of sex- hormone chewing gum; the Assistant Predestinator came out and cadged almost abjectly for an invitation to one of Bernard’s evening parties.  As for the women, Bernard had only to hint at the possibility of an invitation, and he could have whichever of them he liked.” John and Linda had made Bernard popular amongst the castes of the Hatchery and Conditioning Centre.  Before the trip to the reservation, Bernard focused his eyes on Lenina.  He didn’t like the fact that other men treated her like a piece of meat.  But now, Bernard can have any girl in London that he wants because of his success of bringing John and Linda to the London.  Bernard also gained a new reputation with the Controllers, including Mustapha Mond.

The things that Bernard once believed in, he no longer sees important in chapters 10-13. For example, before Bernard traveled to the reservation, he did not believe in the use of Soma to create happiness.  Yes, he took soma occasionally, but within chapters 10-13, you can tell that Bernard has become more accustomed to taking soma.  He takes it for the hell of it now.  Bernard now enjoys the world that he lives in and doesn’t even think to complain about the things he once was concerned with, including conditioning and hypnopedia.  he doesn’t have time for this anymore.  Now all he cares about is showing John off to the people of London. No one pays mind to Linda, John’s mother.  Bernard actually approves of the fact that Linda is given as much soma as she wants, even though this will end in her early death.

Bernard also gave up his friendship with his close friend Helmholtz because he believed that Helmholtz was jealous of his success.  In chapter 11, Bernard boasted to Helmholtz about his new success with women.  He states, “And I had six girls last week; one on Monday, two on Tuesday, two more on Friday, and one on Saturday.  And if I’d have the time or the inclination, there were at least a dozen more who were only too anxious…”  Helmholtz could only shake his head once he heard this.  Bernard accused Helmholtz of being envious and told himself “never would he speak to Helmholtz again.”  Luckily, in the future, Bernard is able to win back Helmoltz’s friendship, but once that happens he is the one who becomes jealous because Helmholtz took liking to John.

But one thing about Bernard that stayed the same was his nasty attitude.   Whenever Helmholtz and John were around each other, they would share conversations that Bernard  commented negatively to.  He replied with his “acts of vengeance” until Helmholtz was fed up and told him not to comment negatively again.


Effects and uses of soma

So in these chapters I feel that the use of soma has really shown itself to be useful in different ways. We find this through characters that we have grown to understand little by little and observe the exact moment and situations that cause them to intake this “feel good” drug.

Taking soma when feeling uncomfortable. A prime example of this is in Lenina’s character. Throughout the book we observe that Lenina has the tendency of feeling very uncomfortable in certain situations or conflicts with other characters. First example is when she took soma after being rejected by John on her roof in chapter 11″Drying her eyes, Lenina walked across the roof to the lift. On her way down to the twenty-seventh floor she pulled out her soma bottle. One gramme she decided, would not be enough; hers had been more than a one-gramme affliction.” (157). We can tell she does not take rejection lightly being that her first reaction to sadness is to take soma. Another example is in chapter 12 (163) when Lenina says “I’d better take a couple of gramme of soma” after the Arch-Community-Songster asks her to join him. We can tell she does not want to go, making her feel uncomfortable and of course she resorts to soma.

Linda is another interesting case in the use of soma. In this case we find that she is using it to sort of forget all that has happened to her in the reservation. Soma-holiday as they call it; a permanent way of drowning her out of the society she once was apart of. Knowingly putting Linda into a state of “eternity” where she would be out of the way and out of sight chapter 11 (143). John and Dr. Shaw ultimately knew that consuming this much soma would eventually kill her, but the “bright-side of this was that yes, the soma would shorten her life in real time but will lengthen it in “immeasurable time” out in eternity.”. I find it very interesting that this was there way of fixing this situation. Having all this advance technology and way of life. They found Linda unable to be “rejuvenated” and they did not feel bad about it. They prefer it this way, why? Maybe she could have corrupted the society with what she knew from the reservation.

We move onto our protagonist Bernard, the one character I thought would never touch soma. He seemed so against it in the first couple of chapters but lately we’ve seen something different. In chapter 12 “Watching them, listening to their talk, he found himself sometimes resentfully wishing that he had never brought them together. He was ashamed of his jealousy and alternately made efforts of will and took soma to keep himself from feeling it.” (166). Observed in this part of the book, Bernard finally uses soma to subside his true feelings on the newly found relationship between Helmholtz and John. He simply cannot accept the fact that they instantly bonded over literature and rhymes, a bond that Bernard thought only he had with John. Bernard knows that the soma does not help his situations, so it leaves me to wonder why he continues to take it. Is it him finally giving into his conditioning? or is he trying to find an accepted way of escape? Many questions arise from Bernard use of soma, but what we do know is that he takes it when is trying to cope with an unrecognizable feeling or urge. Feelings that are normal to us the reader and completely frowned upon in the World’s State.

Bernard’s Distraction

I found this weeks reading chapters 10-13 to be really interesting, since things played out completely different than I expected it to turn out. I felt that Bernard gave the director a visit immediately upon his arrival back to the world state, that things would drastically change this society when Bernard expose terrifying Linda and handsome son john to the director in front of many citizens. The only thing that really changed was Bernard himself. After the Director resigned immediately due to embarrassment and shame, Bernard was treated extremely nice by society which wasn’t genuine at all but was looked upon as Bernard’s big break.

I didn’t appreciate how fast Bernard became a true citizen only because the citizens had been fake and welcoming towards him. I’m pretty sure that Bernard is aware that the citizens don’t really like him but they just need him to get closer to john, but since the attention was on himself felt great he would now all of a sudden sleep around with the females. (Pg.145) “And I had six girls last week”…… Why is Bernard boasting about this? It’s out of character since before the trip he couldn’t stand orgy and any other group activity. This leads me to believe that in fact alcohol was given to Bernard by mistake during birth. This would explain his depression and also it was conformed by one of the characters that the rumors about Bernard is really true.

I feel that the society is trying to kill Linda by allowing her to over dose on soma that way they don’t have to see her and see don’t have to see them. “Soma may make you lose a few years in time”(pg.143) how is soma safe if it cuts your life down by years in exchange for just a few hours of happiness ? Is this the reason why citizens die after they reach 60 years old? This pill will most likely lead to johns mothers death later on since right now she is stuck in holiday and hasn’t moved from her bed yet.

Bernard is caught up in all this attention that he isn’t interested in the health of Linda at all, he just wants john around to keep the company and attention of the hateful citizens which to me is crazy. He is completely off task with trying to break society but instead society will soon break him emotionally back to his old gloomy self. “Success went frizzily to Bernard’s head”(pg .145). This scene shows that Bernard’s ego keeps getting larger and irritating towards others,his only true friend Helmholtz couldn’t relate to Bernard any longer because his drastic change in character. Helmholtz challenged authority just like Bernard so had a better connection with each other.

On page 159 Bernard was in for a rude awaking  at his party when john decided not to show himself to the citizens that has pretended to be nice to him. This is where the citizens true characters showed how much hate they have for Bernard. I think that this was good for him to face so he can snap back to reality since all this time he was just used to see John which never happened. I wonder if this experience will give Bernard the will to try to break the world state or just live his life as an outcast “Savage”.