Brave New World

Master EdCafe                                                                                                                       katrina.kennett@gmail.com


Topics to Explore

- What makes us human?

- Brave New World - moments, chapters, overall ideas

- readings & connections between our society & Brave New World (bit.ly/AdamsIntro , bit.ly/PostmanIntro , compiled readings )

Door Corner

Flag Corner

Triple R

Safe Spot

Session 1

until 9:20

Don’t Conform to the Norm

In Brave New World, citizens all act according to how their caste is forced to act. Is our society the same way? With advertisements and media that brainwashes us to act a certain way, are we going to end up with a world similar to the world depicted in this novel?

(The One and Only Greg Costello)

The Pursuit of Happiness

What is the difference between true happiness and the state of being content? Is there one? And what is the gray area between these two states of being?

(Rachael)

Soma Compared to the Drugs in our Community.

Every individual reacts differently to the drugs in our community, in A Brave New World when Bernard takes Soma he is happy, but seems to act a bit different than the others (laughing at everything). Not exactly himself, so having no drugs is kind of a contradiction in the book because soma is like the drugs we have in our community. (Alyssa)

Is Humanity All About Choices?

In Brave New World the government has complete control over the people. The life they will live is predetermined while they are an embryo. The lack of choice and the sense of contentment that is forced upon them strips the people of their individuality. Is it our ability to make choices that makes us human? (Allie)

Session 2

Lenina’s Emotions

Lenina, our well-trained Beta, seems nothing more than just the average nobody - exactly what she should be. But her new, unique romantic feelings for John are extremely confusing for her, and frustrating. Why hasn’t the World State been able to prevent her from these feelings, and should she be expected to deal with them rationally? (Jess)

Words like xrays

Since this society doesn’t feel any happiness and they’re always content, what does that mean for our society with all of our emotions? We are often hurt by words or shaped by them (see Facebook, etc), is it worth it?

(Morgan)

To be Human

There are several definitions to what being human means. Do the people in Brave New World  fit the definitions of humanity? Are they human?

(Bri)

A Fine Line

Humanity thrives on connections with other people, on being part of a group. Yet solitude is a necessary part of our life as well. Is there such a thing as being too social? Just because you’re alone, does it necessarily mean you’re lonely? Does the scale of society vs solitude tip one way more than the other, or is it a balance? (Marisa)

Session 3

The Role of Science

Everything in Brave New World is controlled by science. Babies are created in test tubes, the people are conditioned to fit their job and their caste, and hypnopaedia ingrains rules into their thoughts in order to never forget them. Does this make them human, or artificial tools in society? (Emily)

Coffins and Chocolate Ice Cream

Death is viewed in many different ways, in many different cultures, Italian cultures are known to higher professional mourners, many Americans have Funerals in very formal organized manners, and many cultures look at death as a new beginning. In the book Brave New World Days of ones death is viewed as a joyous occasion where a select few people go and receive chocolate ice cream. How does the way a culture look at death define the culture, and how does each culture's view of death affect the society?

(Will)

Technology is our Soma.

On my blog, I read a post that was written by someone who was anonymous. In that post they described how technology today is our soma.When we want to escape or get away and relax, we do things like turn on the tv, listen to music, go on the internet, or maybe even text our best friends. We have not evolved into a world in which relies on drugs, but we rely strictly on technology. Is this true? Why or why not? Can relying on technology be dangerous? Does it have the same effects as Soma? (Kelsie)

Are we living the right way?

How do we know what our society tells us is “right” is actually the best way to be living? Our society basically brainwashed us into believing everything that they do is the right thing to do, but what if there is a better way of living?

(Merry)

Session 4

Identity

Through the book Brave New World, a state in which the individual ceases to exist is presented to the readers. Without a sense of being oneself or having the ability to ordain one’s environment for themselves,can one truly be happy? Stripped of the ability to experience pain and sadness can we be happy?or even human?

(Samuel)

 Predictions

How did Huxley anticipate what would happen in the future? From his viewpoints in Brave New World, he predicts what could and will happen in the future from the 1930’s that he lived in. Did any of his predictions evolve into reality? Is our society just a less controlled version of the Brave New World?(Kayla)

Schooling

With each new concept that is drilled into the minds of the children living in Brave New World, we discover that there are age specific repetitions that must be coordinated at certain times before they are taught via hypnopaedia. As this structure resembles striking similarities to the schooling system of our world, where certain classes are required and positioned in a standard student schedule, I question if this is what our society is embodying; or vice versa!  In the Flag Corner, we will discuss if the productive sleep tactics of hypnopaedia resemble the same fundamentals as our government orders. (Timbo)

Escape to No Escape

In Brave New World, the last page is in opinion the most striking and interesting page in the whole book. I would like to open this conversation to people who have already finished this book but anyone is welcome. I would like to discuss how even though people can escape, can they truly escape?. No matter where you run you can not hide from others, which seems very apparent in this book. ( Bonny)

Session 5

Angst:

You can find sadness in almost any animal, however the sadness an animal suffers through is far different from the angst humans deal with. Angst is a heart wrenching sadness or anger with no real underlying reason. No other living organism goes through “Angsty Teen years” like humans. Humanity can only be found through the deepest of pain and sadness and the purest happiness, which is why it could be argued that the people of the Estate in Brave New World are not human.

(Bethany)

A Defining Desire

Many other organisms want to know , “what”, “where”, and “when”. But we, as humans, dare to utter the words “why” and “how”. Knowing that something is the way that it is does not satisfy humans, we need to know why it is the way it is and how it got to be that way. We, among other things, dare to question why we are here and how we got here. We naturally have an overwhelming sense of curiosity, almost a need to know things. Is it this desire for knowledge that makes us human?

(Steve)

The Individual

If society takes away the ability to make your own decisions, can we exist as an individual?

(Holly)

Dependence on Drugs

What is the connection between our world and the World State regarding dependence on drugs? How does soma parallel ADHD drugs, but are both just masking the problems instead of actaully improving your state of mind / living?