In Brave New World, why would you describe John as a confused person?

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mstultz72 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Have you seen the Seinfeld episode where George says, "If Relationship George walks through this door, he will kill Independent George. A George divided against itself cannot stand!"?

That's the way John is in Brave New World.  Except, you know, without the laughs.

John is torn between two worlds: the Brave New World (Utopia) and the Savage Reservaton (Dystopia).  He is torn between two women: Lenina (his lover) and Linda (his mother).  He is torn between two emotions: pleasure (Brave New World) and intellect (Savage Reservation).  He is torn between two fathers: the Direction (who abandons him) and Bernard (who rescues him).

Enotes says it best:

John the Savage is the central character in Brave New World through whom Huxley compares the primitive and civilized societies of the future...Sometimes called just “the Savage,” John represents the idea of the Noble Savage: that a person raised in a primitive world, away from western civilization, has a purity of heart that civilized people lack (although Huxley does not portray the primitive world as a paradise). John the Savage cannot understand why civilized people think that having been born to and raised by your parents is an abomination, or why they do not feel sorrow when confronted with death. He very much loves his mother, and cannot understand why his father rejects him. After several discussions with Mustapha Mond, he quickly realizes that because his values are completely different from other people’s, no place exists for him within civilization.

In the end, John is so confused and divided that he kills himself.  He cannot reconcile his emotions and purge his guilt.  Was it suicide or a Christ-like martyrdom?  Even in death, he is torn...