The new world
The novel begins with a visit from a school class to the incubation and conditioning center, where the embryos are created and indoctrinated. The director of the center explains to the children the conditioning methods used to create the perfect new members of society.
There are five castes: Alfa, Beta, Gamma, Delta and Epsilon. The Alpha are at the top, followed by the Beta. Below them, the Gamma, Delta and Epsilon, which perform the most humble tasks. However no one complains, everyone’s material needs are fully satisfied, there is no inter-class hatred because everyone is indispensable to society.
Lenina Crowne is a Beta woman who works in the center. It is perfectly embedded in society, but has some unconventional traits: it prefers to have monogamous relationships (a friend reproaches her for not being sufficiently promiscuous) and is attracted to Bernard Marx, an Alfa different from the others. Physically he is lower than the standard, mentally he is reserved and introverted, he refuses to take drugs with soma, he is critical towards the society in which he lives. His only friend is Helmholtz Watson, a very intelligent Alpha who is also dissatisfied with the life he leads.
Bernard takes Lenina on vacation to a reserve in New Mexico, one of the few places where the „savages“ still live, that is to say the populations left out of the lifestyle of the new world. In the face of suffering, illness, old age, family relationships, Lenina feels disgust, while Bernard is fascinated. They also witness a brutal ritual where a boy is whipped until he faints.
They then meet Linda and her son John. Linda, a Beta, many years before had come on vacation to the reserve in the company of Thomas Tomakin, the director of the Center. She was reported missing, but in truth she survived and gave birth to John, the son of Tomakin.
John grew up reading the few books that escaped the purification of the new world, like Shakespeare’s tragedies. Obstructed by other savages, mother and son want to enter the new world. Lenina and Bernard are attracted by John’s diversity, and they bring them both to England with them.
Aldous Huxley was born on July 26, 1894 in Godalming in Surrey, southern England. His mother died when he was fourteen, his father was a poet and biographer. At the age of sixteen, Aldous Huxley went completely blind for nearly two years, later he was able to read with special lenses. Despite his strong visual impairment, he studied English at Oxford. A scientific career or participation in the First World War, however, were not possible. Not least because of that, he turned to writing. In 1916 his first book of poetry appeared, in 1921 the first novel. In the 1930s, Huxley toured Europe and settled down. a. lived longer in Italy, where he wrote his famous book „Beautiful New World“. In 1937 he moved to the USA. On November 22, 1963 Aldous Huxley died in Los Angeles.