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Explain how John's perspective on suffering and happiness contrasts with that of...

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weee69 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 29, 2012 at 3:24 AM via web

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Explain how John's perspective on suffering and happiness contrasts with that of Mustapha's.

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tinicraw | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted March 1, 2012 at 4:30 AM (Answer #1)

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Chapter 17 is when Joh and Mustapha have their clarifying discussion about both sides of the civilization's philosophy of life. They debate topics like God and happiness among many other questions that John, and possibly the reader, have about the new world. John says, "Art, science - you seem to have paid a fairly high price for your happiness" (276). Mond's response is basically, "Our civilization has chosen machinery and medicine and universal  happiness" (281). John mentions that ". . . everything noble and fine and heroic" are sacrificed in order to have their type of happiness. John even brings up chastity as something that is clearly lacking in the world.  Mond responds, "But chastity means passion. . . and passion mean(s) instability"; therefore, chastity is not happiness. Between the two different responses to the topics at hand, John learns that the new world will not change and that they are forever at an impass.

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