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What is the pregnancy substitute in Brave New World?

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arussell93 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 19, 2011 at 10:06 PM via web

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What is the pregnancy substitute in Brave New World?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted December 21, 2011 at 10:32 AM (Answer #1)

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A pregnancy substitute is a set of injections and pills that women are given to simulate the effects of being pregnant.  By that, I mean that they simulate the hormonal effects of pregnancy.  In the book, women are said to need these and are in fact required to have one when they are twenty one years old.  In Chapter 3, we see that Fanny has been told to have one at age 19 and that she should have had one at 17 because she is a brunette with a wide pelvis.

We "see" the ingredients of the substitute in Fanny's locker:

"SYRUP OF CORPUS LUTEUM," Lenina read the names aloud. "OVARIN, GUARANTEED FRESH: NOT TO BE USED AFTER AUGUST 1ST, A.F. 632. MAMMARY GLAND EXTRACT: TO BE TAKEN THREE TIMES DAILY, BEFORE MEALS, WITH A LITTLE WATER. PLACENTIN: 5cc TO BE INJECTED INTRAVENALLY EVERY THIRD DAY …

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