Brave New World Questions and Answers
by Aldous Huxley

Brave New World book cover
Start Your Free Trial

In Brave New World, why does John refuse to come to the party? What effect does this have on Bernard?

In Brave New World, John refuses to come to the party because after his disappointing date with Lenina, he has become tired of and disgusted by the brave new world and wants only to be alone. Bernard is distraught, as he knows his guests have only come to see John, not him, and his briefly elevated social status falls accordingly.

Expert Answers info

Colin Cavendish-Jones, Ph.D. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

briefcaseCollege Professor, Lawyer

bookM.A. from Oxford University

bookPh.D. from St. Andrews University


calendarEducator since 2019

write2,273 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

When John refuses to come to the party, or even to open the door to Bernard, at the beginning of chapter 12, the only reason he gives for not wanting to attend is that he has always done so before. It is Bernard who raises this point as a reason why he should come, to which John replies,

That’s precisely why I don’t want to come again.

Bernard is not interested in finding out why John does not want to come to the party, only in persuading him to change his mind, since he knows his guests have only come to meet the Savage and will be angered by his absence. The reader, however, will connect John's refusal with his frustrating and disappointing date with Lenina in the previous chapter and his growing disgust with the shallow, ignoble nature of the brave new world. Feeling like this, John is unwilling even to speak to Bernard, let alone a group of dignitaries asking intrusive questions.

John's refusal brings Bernard close to tears. He is compelled "to slink back, diminished, to his rooms...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 845 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write10,912 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

mrs-campbell eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2008

write2,159 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Arts

check Approved by eNotes Editorial