Why are the children having erotic playtime in Brave New World?

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Children engage in erotic play because it teaches them to equate sex with meaningless fun.

Sex plays a very different role in the modern society than it does in ours.  To them, motherhood and birth are considered vulgar.  Sex is just another activity that people do as a diversion, and...

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is intentionally separated from love.

Erotic play is encouraged among younger children to ensure that they do not ever associate sex with love.  In fact, when young children do not engage in the sexual games they are considered abnormal.

"It's just that this little boy seems rather reluctant to join in the ordinary erotic play. I'd noticed it once or twice before. And now again today. He started yelling just now …" (Ch. 3)

If the children do not engage in this type of play, it is assumed that there is something wrong with them.  It is very important that everyone fit into their role in society, so they take this very seriously.

All individuals in this society are clones.  Most of them are infertile, except for a few who wear Malthusian belts with contraceptives.  The “freemartins” can have sex without consequence.  Either way, this prevents unwanted babies.

Men and women who have a lot of sex are respected in this society.  Consider the description of Helmholtz Watson.

This Escalator-Squash champion, this indefatigable lover (it was said that he had had six hundred and forty different girls in under four years), this admirable committee man and best mixer had realized quite suddenly that sport, women, communal activities were only, so far as he was concerned, second bests. (Ch. 4)

Just as children are considered abnormal when they don’t engage in sexual play, adult men and women are considered dysfunctional and weird if they do not take many casual lovers.  There is no such thing as monogamy, which they view as wrong. 

In a world where "mother" is one of the most vulgar words imaginable, sex is nothing more than a pastime.  People are dependent on mass-consumerism and idle entertainment in an endless pursuit of pleasure with no substance. This keeps the population in check, and ensures that overpopulation will never occur.  That's easy when everyone is a clone.

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In Huxley's Brave New World, why do adults encourage erotic play among young children?

Huxley's society in Brave New World controls humans both psychologically and genetically. The first two chapters outline how people are manipulated genetically to accept their projected social positions once they are born. The society is completely against monogamy and families because there are different rules and loyal feelings associated with them. Huxley's government wants people to be free to explore their passions outside of the rules of marriage and family. In this way, people can feel loyal to themselves rather than to other people. If people are permitted to seek out their own passions, then the government believes that everyone will be happy. Little children are encouraged to look at each other's naked bodies in order to cultivate the individual passions which lead to selfishness rather than selflessness. Those participating in marriage and families tend to sacrifice everything for those whom they love. This government believes that people shouldn't have to sacrifice anything in order to be happy; and that loyal love is one thing that limits a person's happiness.

It is wise to cross-reference chapter three with chapters sixteen and seventeen because the philosophy behind the society is clearly divulged there. When Mond and the Savage discuss the differences between free thinking and learning as opposed to one based on narcissism, Mond says, "But that's the price we have to pay for stability. You've got to choose between happiness and what people used to call high art. We've sacrificed the high art. We have the feelies and the scent organ instead" (264). Here Mond means that if people are permitted to follow their passions rather than their loyalties then happiness and stability can exist. Hence, little children are permitted to run around naked in order to cultivate the idea to follow their senses rather than to learn self-awareness or loyalty.

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