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Discuss the relationship between technology and utopia (or dystopia) in Brave New...

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joobie7 | Student, College Freshman | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted March 13, 2012 at 12:37 PM via web

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Discuss the relationship between technology and utopia (or dystopia) in Brave New World. How is it represented?

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 13, 2012 at 2:10 PM (Answer #1)

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From the very first chapter where we are presented with the highly sophisticated technology of the Hatching Unit, it is clear that this novel is set in a world that is scarily advanced technologically. What is so interesting of course is that the way in which they have brought a human caste system into the world through genetic engineering. The way in which they deprive some embryos of more oxygen than others means that they automatically produce a scale of humanity, ranging from alphas to epsilons, that make different kinds of humans who are perfectly suited with their lot in life. If they are not, the soma that keeps the public in a drug-like euphoric state ensures that everybody remains happy with their life.

What the novel points out about this highly sophisticated level of technology is that actually, for all the supposed happiness that is created, such stratification of human beings actually robs them of individual agency and free will. They are not able to live their lives as free, thinking humans who can do what they want. Peace and stability has only been brought at the price of transforming humans into robot-like beings.

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